One of the most common misconceptions about human trafficking is that it happens to people who enter the United States illegally – people who don’t have the legal protections and safety net of the U.S. government.
But in reality, even people who come into this country legally are at risk for human trafficking. In fact, foreign nationals who come into the United States on temporary work visas are exceptionally vulnerable to exploitation and victimization.
Since December 2007, Polaris has identified nearly 30,000 human trafficking and labor exploitation cases in the United States through operating the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) hotline and BeFree Textline. In approximately 18% of these cases, at least one victim of the situation had a temporary visa.