In 2020, the National Human Trafficking and Disabilities Working Group conducted a National Data and Assessment Survey among service providers in the disability community, and service providers in the anti-trafficking community to learn more about the prevalence of individuals with disabilities who have experienced trafficking.
NHTDWG members anecdotally knew human trafficking of people with disabilities was happening more than was acknowledged in discussion and policies. Furthermore, the Working Group suspected many human trafficking survivors with disabilities were left unidentified. NHTDWG wanted to see if research supported these anecdotal findings. In August 2020, NHTDWG launched two separate surveys among disability service providers and human trafficking service providers. NHTDWG wanted to learn if direct service providers were collecting data at the intersection of human trafficking and disabilities, and how providers were collecting such data. Furthermore, the Working Group wanted to find out if and how direct service providers were assessing for all forms of human trafficking and all forms of disability, and if screening for human trafficking and disabilities was a part of overall protocol or policy of service providers.
Survey results revealed, that the majority of disability providers responding to the survey do not have screening in place
for human trafficking, and less than half of anti-trafficking providers screen for disabilities. Furthermore, very little collaboration existed between human trafficking and disability service providers.
Report prepared by Sara Bovat, Jody Haskin, Jessica Hinman and Sari Latomaa.