Hundreds of young people are being abused and exploited within the travelling sales industry in the US.
In a report published on Thursday, entitled Knocking at Your Door, the anti-trafficking charity Polaris describes how unemployed young people are targeted by recruiters who promise them an enjoyable job involving travel and high profits.
Once part of a travelling team selling goods door to door, however, they become vulnerable to serious abuse. Victims’ earnings are often confiscated, leaving them dependent on their manager for transport and accommodation. Workers who try to leave face being abandoned hundreds of miles from home.
Between January 2008 and February 2015, more than 400 reports of labour trafficking cases were made to the National Human Trafficking Resource Centre (NHTRC) hotline and special text service. That represents a higher reported level of exploitation than any other industry except domestic work.