While the numbers of victims identified each year varies according to country, jurisdiction and responsiveness of all of our worldwide governments, it is estimated that the numbers represented are just the tip of the ice-berg and that in reality, only 1% of victims of Human Trafficking will ever be identified.
"In low-income countries, children make up half of the victims detected and are mainly trafficked for forced labour. Criminals trafficking children target victims from extremely poor households, dysfunctional families or those who are abandoned with no parental care."
According to the International Organisation for Migration, "the extent of family involvement in the trafficking of children is more than four times higher than in cases of adult trafficking."
"In addition to sexual exploitation and forced labour, children are exploited for begging and forced criminal activities, such as drug trafficking, among other crimes."
"Most child victims globally are trafficked for sexual exploitation."
Human Trafficking, which includes the trafficking of children, is a growing criminal activity and justice issue in Ireland. The importance of anti-trafficking training is currently being recognised and implemented across the country for frontline professionals working in the areas of health, social work, law enforcement and immigration.
The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission noted in June 2022 at the launch of its Human Trafficking in Ireland Report that
“Ireland is not immune to trafficking. Year after year, the experiences of front-line responders, the accounts of victims, and the data itself show clearly that human trafficking crimes are being committed in Ireland and people are being exploited in various ways for profit…urgent action is required, including in the form of policy, legislation and action”
Minister McEntee noted in October 2020 at the launch of a Human Trafficking public awareness campaign: “The terrible reality is that victims of human trafficking may potentially be hidden in plain sight, in any community in Ireland.”
Source: The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission, Department of Justice and Equality, Government of Ireland