What is Human Trafficking?

Legal Definitions

Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery. It is a crime under international law, federal and the State of Michigan as well as each individual state in the United States.  The term “severe forms of trafficking in persons” is the statement reflecting how serious it is for it to be slavery and includes both sex and labor trafficking.

FEDERAL Anti-Trafficking Laws

The Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA of 2000 and revised in 2003, 2008, and 2013) is the first comprehensive federal law to address trafficking in persons. An annual report, TIP, is a valuable research tool that is published annually in June describing anti-trafficking efforts in over 180 countries in the world as well as giving explicit recommendations on needed progress. Each country is then rated on a Tier systems of 1, 2, 2 1/2 or 3. The U.S. Secretary of State is responsible for this report.

  • SEX TRAFFICKING is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for the purposes of a commercial sex act, in which the commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person included to perform such an act has not attained 18 years of age. (22 USC 5 7102(9) ),
  • LABOR TRAFFICKING is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purposes of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage or slavery.(22 USC 5 7102(O) ).
  • Force, fraud, and coercion include threats, either physical or psychological, in which a victim has a belief that the person has the capability of performing such an act.
  • Commercial sex act means anything of value is given to or received by any person.
  • A minor in federal law is anyone under the age of 18 and force, fraud, and coercion are not included as elements. Consent is not an issue.

MICHIGAN Anti-Trafficking Laws

The prosecutor in each county and the Michigan Attorney General are responsible for the determination of whether an individual case meets the requirements of violations of Michigan anti-trafficking law. These laws are very similar to Federal law. Many other State crimes can also be charged in combination or by themselves.



Types of identified trafficking and venues

  • Forced prostitution or minors involved in sexual exploitation or prostitution
  • Domestic Servitude Worker
  • Arranged Marriage
  • Strip club work
  • Restaurant work
  • Agricultural labor
  • Pornography including filming, distribution, and site performance
  • Construction, maintenance, landscape labor
  • Food processing plants
  • Use in criminal activity, such as in sale of drugs
  • Forced begging
  • Sweatshops, such as manufacture, sewing and distribution of clothing
  • Magazine selling in groups within different places
  • Sale of babies
  • Sale of human organs, which includes removal
  • Debt bondage
  • Child soldiers, including 16 countries in the world
  • Internet based exploitation
  • Massage parlors
  • Nail salons
  • Casino presence

Break the Silence.