Despite massive leaps and bounds in technology and quality of life across the planet, there is still a very dark problem and it is hiding in plain sight. Slavery. According to the most recent data, there are over 40 million people in slavery with 1 in 4 of them being children. Its scope is massive and so are its profits — raking in around $150 billion annually.
An estimated 40.3 million people are in some form of slavery in 167 countries around the world, according to the Global Slavery Index published by the Walk Free Foundation. This number is the highest it has ever been.
An article published in Psychology Today reminds us of the ominous state of the free world. “Never before in human history have this many people been enslaved,” write Jenny Hwang and Shayne Moore in their report on the heart-rending data about child trafficking.
In the US, child trafficking is a growing problem in all 50 states. Children, young girls—some as young as 9 years old—are being bought and sold for sex in America. The average age for a young woman being sold for sex is now 13 years old.
As the recent verdict in the Ghislaine Maxwell trial shows us, the problem goes all the way to the top.
Sex trafficking—especially when it comes to the buying and selling of young girls—has become big business in America, the fastest growing business in organized crime and the second most-lucrative commodity traded illegally after drugs and guns.