Human trafficking is an offence under Article 279 of the Criminal Code of Canada and Article 118 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Canada’s National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking states that:
Following Canadian law and United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in persons, especially Woman and Children, (Palermo Protocol), there are three elements to human trafficking: the Act (what is done), the Means (how it is done) and the Purpose (why it is done).
Although women represent the majority of human trafficking victims in Canada, men and children can also be victims. Those who are most likely to be at-risk include:
There are very few clear black-and-white indicators of human trafficking. An individual may be a potential victim of human trafficking if they:
Service providers across multiple sectors play a significant role in supporting persons who have been trafficked. Strategies grounded in human rights approaches are key to addressing human trafficking. Service provision rooted in intersectional trauma-informed strategies, that decolonize trauma approaches that are strengths-based, and that recognize and respect persons autonomy and self-determination that is essential to address the human impact of human trafficking. Equally important is an awareness that human trafficking is at once a unique personal experience and a social issue.
If you, or someone you know, could use support because you experienced violence or exploitation, or are at risk of either, we can offer a number of direct intervention supports.
The Canadian Human Trafficking Hotline is a confidential, multilingual service, operating 24/7 to connect victims / survivors with social services, law enforcement, and emergency services, as well as receive tips from the public.