How many people are victims of modern day slavery in Canada?
Exact numbers of victims are unknown because this is a highly lucrative and criminal business. Yet it clear that there are hundreds, potentially thousands, of victims exploited in Canada every year.
Some are children, women and men who had been victimized in a foreign country and are transported to Canada by their traffickers for greater profits.
Others are victims who were lured to the country with false promises of residency, work or big money. They are deceived, coerced or threatened to work in the sex industry or in other unpaid work.
Still others are individuals arrive knowing they will be engaged in prostitution but hope that the industry will profitable for them. Once in Canada they owe large debts to their trafficker and cannot leave their situation.
In 2004, the RCMP estimated that 800 foreign trafficking victims were exploited every year in Canada (600 in sexual exploitation and a further 200 in forced labour). The Criminal Intelligence Service of Canada confirmed that Canadian women and under-aged girls are victims as well, transported both within Canada and into the United States for sexual exploitation. Invisible Chains documents dozens of cases that confirm the systematic nature of human trafficking across Canada.
How many victims travel through Canada to the United States?
The United States is a significant destination for labour and sex trafficking. Between 14,500 and 17,500 victims are brought into that country. Recent increases in airport security has made land crossings into the U.S. from Canada and Mexico more attractive to traffickers.
While reliable estimates are not available, the most commonly cited estimate by the RCMP in 2004 suggests that between 1500-2200 people travel through Canada to the U.S. each year.
Are Canadians involved in sex trafficking internationally?
Canadian pedophiles and sexual predators travel overseas as “sex tourists” and are well represented. Their exploitation of children, men and women overseas fuels the demand for prostitution in that country and contributes to the exploitation of vulnerable people.