Calls to sex trafficking hotlines increase

The National Human Trafficking Resource Center and Polaris BeFree texting helpline say they saw a 26 percent increase in reports in 2014 over the previous year. And since 2007, the groups report having received 19,724 reports of trafficking, including 546 in Ohio.

Contacts made to the helplines have steadily increased over the past seven years.

“Behind the data are the stories of thousands of women, men and children in each and every state who were exploited against their will. This information also helps us learn crucial trends we can use to shut down traffickers and their networks,” said Polaris Chief Executive Bradley Myles in a written statement.

Data show the top three sex trafficking venues are commercial front brothels, Internet ads and hotels or motels while the top three labor trafficking industries are domestic help, traveling sales crews and food service.

Almost one-third of trafficking victims are children and 79 percent are female.

The hotlines received 809 calls from Ohio — from tipsters, victims, family members and others — that filtered into 164 cases.

The National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline is 888-373-7888.

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