"Reports of human trafficking cases in the United States are expected to leap by 25 percent this year over last, an increase linked to round-the-clock texting that makes reporting the crime easier, the head of a trafficking hotline said on Tuesday.
Cases reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline are expected to hit more than 11,000 by year's end, the most in its 11-year history, its director, Caroline Diemar, said.
Operated by the Washington-based anti-trafficking group Polaris, the hotline provides support for survivors and last year handled nearly 8,800 reported sex and labor trafficking cases.
The projected jump in reported cases illustrates that survivors are finding it easier to seek help, not that the rate of the crime is necessarily on the rise, Diemar told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
'More and more people are knowing that there's a resource available to them, and that they can get access to help,' she said.
'We're not talking about it being an indication of prevalence,' she said. 'More and more people are reaching out.'"