How Human Trafficking and Poor Mental Health Are Results of Poverty


Poverty is a global issue that has yet to be resolved, so how do we correct this problem? A part of fixing any issue is understanding the source of it. Poverty is defined in the dictionary as “the state or condition of having little or no money, goods, or means of support; condition of being poor” in other words, not able to live comfortably. It goes without saying that homelessness is a result of poverty. However, poverty causes many problems, such as human trafficking and poor mental health. According to the Polaris Project website, risk factors for human trafficking is 569 for runaway and homeless youth and 530 for mental health concern. Mental health and homelessness cause desperation to improve ones well being. Which causes them to be prone to human trafficking. 


Human traffickers have many methods but the one that is most commonly used is grooming. Grooming is when a trafficker takes time to gain trust from the victim by complimenting them and giving them a place to stay. In an article by New York Post titled ‘The sick tactics sex traffickers use to find victims, it states that traffickers often look for their victims outside of foster homes and high schools. Traffickers mainly target women because they are more vulnerable and prone to homelessness. Traffickers want to find the weakest and most vulnerable parts of their victims and use it to get them to agree to traffic. 


Poor mental health can be a result of poverty. When someone is struggling to be financially stable enough to keep up with their bills it can take a toll on their mental health. It can feel burdening. Dealing with the constant fear of not knowing where one is going to sleep at night or if they are able to buy food for themselves can cause stress. If a person is under stress and pressure all the time it can lead to depression and possibly suicidal thoughts.  


How can we as a society change this? We can help out by donating to homeless shelters or if you know someone personally who is struggling financially lend them support. There is always a way to help others. This is a serious issue that can only be resolved by awareness and people's willingness to help out those in need. If you need help or know someone who does you can call 1 (888) 373-7888 National Human Trafficking Hotline or 1-833-375-2237 Homeless Resource Helpline. There is always someone willing to help.

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