For over a decade, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has been a national leader in advocacy and education to eradicate sex and labor trafficking. Currently these partners are concentrating on training and technical assistance so that victims can be identified, brought into safety, and ultimately we can help eradicate the horrible crime of modern day slavery.
Human trafficking is a horrific crime against the fundamental rights and dignity of the human person. Owing to the lack of anti-human trafficking laws, enforcement of such laws where they exist, along with the ease and ability to re-exploit individuals, human trafficking has become one of the fastest growing sources of profits for criminal enterprises worldwide. Though efforts to combat it have been increasing, human trafficking has been experiencing a dramatic resurgence in recent years according to the United Nation’s International Labor Organization.
Traffickers lure vulnerable men, women and children with false promises of good jobs, an education, economic security and even love. Once lured, the traffickers are able to keep their victims from seeking help by confiscating identification documents, using threats of violence against the victim or their family, as well as subjecting the victim to physical, psychological and/or sexual abuse.
No sector or industry is immune from human trafficking. Victims have been identified in factories, restaurants, construction work, agricultural fields, hotels, spas, nail salons, and even private residences.
The Catholic Church's vehement opposition to human trafficking is rooted in principles of Catholic social teaching, central to which is the sacredness and dignity of human life, and in the Catechism of the Catholic Church which "forbids acts or enterprises that, for any reason, lead to the enslavement of human beings – to their being bought, sold, and exchanged like merchandise, in disregard for their personal dignity.
Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Palm Beach provides the following: