Common Work and Living Conditions:

​​​​· Is not free to leave or come and go as he/she wishes

​​​​· Is in the commercial sex industry and has a pimp / manager

​​​​· Is unpaid, paid very little, or paid only through tips

​​​​· Works excessively long and/or unusual hours

​​​​· Is not allowed breaks or suffers under unusual restrictions at work

​​​​· Owes a large debt and is unable to pay it off

​​​​· Was recruited through false promises concerning the nature and conditions of his/her work

​​​​· High security measures exist in the work and/or living locations (e.g. opaque windows,

  boarded up windows, bars on windows, barbed wire, security cameras, etc.)

Poor Physical Health:

​·  Lacks medical care and/or is denied medical services by employer

​·  Appears malnourished or shows signs of repeated exposure to harmful chemicals

​·  Shows signs of physical and/or sexual abuse, physical restraint, confinement, or torture

Indicators from National Human Trafficking Resource Center:


​·  Claims of just visiting and inability to clarify where he/she is staying/address

​·  Lack of knowledge of whereabouts and/or of what city he/she is in

​·  Loss of sense of time

​​​​·  ​Has numerous inconsistencies in his/her story

Recognizing the Signs

*This list is not exhaustive.  Not all indicators are present in every case.  

If signs are present, it is an indication that further assessment may be necessary to identify a potential human trafficking situation. Indicators reference conditions a potential victim might exhibit.

Lack of Control:

·  Has few or no personal possessions

​·  Is not in control of his/her own money, no financial records, or bank account

​·  Is not in control of his/her own identification documents (ID or passport)

​·  Is not allowed or able to speak for themselves (a third party may insist on being present

   and/or translating)


Many people ask, "How do I know someone is being trafficked?"  

Below are signs that MAY indicate someone is being trafficked.  

If you suspect that someone is being trafficked*, please contact the

National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline at: 1-888-373-7888.


Poor Mental Health or Abnormal Behavior:

​​​​·  Is fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, or nervous/paranoid

​​​​· Exhibits unusually fearful or anxious behavior after bringing up law enforcement

​​​​· Avoids eye contact