Supporting Victims of Human Trafficking

Having knowledge of the red flags and being vigilant of signs is one of the first steps in assisting someone who has been victimized. Listening to the victim is a key way to ensure they they understand you are willing to help. Understand that a trafficking victim may not open up immediately, don’t be judgmental or pressuring-this relieves the burden of having to speak out and often results in the victim being more willing to disclose information, it also demonstrates your concern and willingness to help the victim. Other key steps in supporting a victim are:

  • Initiate a conversation in private
  • Let go of any expectations you have
  • Challenge and change any inaccurate attitudes and beliefs that you may have about trafficking victims
  • Provide support and empowerment
  • Believe the person
  • Listen to their comments and concerns
  • Build on their strengths
  • Support their decisions
  • Validate their feelings
  • Avoid blaming the victim
  • Take their fears seriously
  • Offer help