cathy terranova blog


Trafficking humans is a multi billion dollar industry. Most of the items we use or consume are in industries whose supply chains are riddled with cases of forced labor. From the minerals used to make cell phones to the kids knocking on your door to sell magazines slavery is everywhere. It isn’t just in sweatshops and back alleys.

There was a case in Oklahoma of trafficked persons working a mall kiosk. Thousands of people walked by them every week for years. No one knew.

International Justice Mission (IJM) has rescued people from brick factories, brothels, rose farms, textile mills; the list goes on.

Each year there are initiatives to bring awareness and aid to the millions of exploited women all over the globe. IJM raised almost a million dollars this last December through their #Dressember campaign. It’s simple, wear dresses for the whole month and raise money. Talk about how woman are oppressed. Not just in sex trafficking but through myriad other practices like land grabbing, genital mutilation, and unfair laws. The problem of women being exploited is enormous.

One part of the problem that gets to most people is sex work. Millions of women are forced to work in the sex trade. Some are not even aware that they are being trafficked. The life that they lead is dismal and many find themselves stuck in a cycle where they can’t escape, even if they try.

But did you know that there are also millions of men who are forced into prostitution? A study released in 2008 showed that 50% of the victims were boys.

Men and boys don’t make up a small percentage of those who are exploited.

This month I will be wearing jeans every day and writing about how you can help. Men are exploited all over the world. This isn’t a critique of media or to cast a shadow on the work that is being done to help women. It is a hope and a prayer that while these issues are in the forefront, we can shine the light a bit wider. We need to help our men and boys.

Visit to learn more about how to help.

Donate to them, tell your friends. Put on some pants and stand up.





photo credit: <a href=”″>How We Dress – Zipper!</a> via <a href=””>photopin</a> <a href=””>(license)</a>