More than 2 million people around the world are victims of human trafficking, according to the United Nations crime fighting office. Eighty percent of those people are held captive for sexual slavery.
The issue of sexual slavery is closer to home than you may think. North Carolina ranks the top 10 most active state for human trafficking, and Charlotte is the largest city in North Carolina with the most reports. The ranking is based on incident calls the Polaris Project, a national organization, receives from each state.
One local woman in the Charlotte area is a human trafficking survivor. She went to Arizona for a modeling opportunity, only to find out she would be trafficked for six months.
“When I was 19, I met this guy through a girl who was a modeling manager,” Jillian Mourning said. “He was [in his] mid-40's, dressed in a really nice business suit. He had a very ‘I’m a very successful person’ aura.”
But one night, she saw his true intentions. Mourning said she never imagined that something like this could ever happen to her. She recalls the night of the first incident.
“The first night I was there, he ended up coming into the room. After videotaping them raping me, I came home and they blackmailed me with the video tapes, [saying] if I didn’t continue, they would sell the video tapes online to all the sites and tag my name,” Mourning said.
She found a way out and started an organization based in Charlotte called “All We Want Is Love.” Mourning now dedicates her time and energy to bringing awareness to this issue in order to help a girl who might be in a similar situation like she once was.