Who’s Right About Prostitution: Satine or Aldonza?

Neither we, nor anyone else in the anti-trafficking movement, knows exactly how many people are in the sex trade in the United States. We have approximations, and feelings based on decades of work, but no comprehensive hard data. For folks new to trafficking,the difference between commercial sex and sex trafficking may feel like a trick [...]

What is a Tweet-a-Thon?

A Tweet-A-Thon is an online event on Twitter where Tweeters focus all of their tweets on a particular issue. Polaris Project’s Summer 2010 Tweet-A-Thon was centralized–that is all official tweets came from our account with #tags showing their authors.  Decentralized versions are also possible, where the entire community agrees to attach a particular #tag to [...]

Why Do Adults Buy and Sell Children like Cosette and Oliver?

In the musical Oliver!, Oliver Twist is an orphan living in Mr. Bumble’s workhouse. When Oliver famously asks for more gruel, Mr. Bumble sings:

There’s a dark, thin winding stairway without any bannister, Which we’ll throw him down and feed him the cockroaches served in a canister.

After Oliver’s uppity request for more [...]

Would Slavery in Jesus or Pseudelous’s Time be Human Trafficking Now?

Slave is a charged term. It may conjure images of antebellum plantations or Maggie Gyllenhaal in Secretary. Naming an act slavery demands such density of drama, implies such historical tragedy that its use must be earned.

Does modern human trafficking look like the slavery against which Sojourner Truth fought?

A form of slavery which existed [...]