January 11th is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day.

Human Trafficking

900 individuals are sold for sex multiple times across the state of Nebraska each month.  As you can see on the map, sex trafficking is not only in Nebraska's large eastern cities, but also in smaller cities in western Nebraska.  Sex trafficking follows the interstate highway system.  Most sex traffic victims (82%) sold in western Nebraska are traveling through to be sold in Omaha.  18% of the sex traffic victims sold in western Nebraska are local inhabitants. 


ne sex trafficking map

National Human Trafficking Hotline


Click here to report potential human trafficking situations.  Confidential.

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  • Truck stops
  • Gas stations
  • Motels
  • Airports


Who is vulnerable in Nebraska?

  • African Americans make up 50% of the individuals sold for sex in Nebraska.
  • Youth- 20% of the individuals sold for sex in Nebraska are advertised as "very young".  The younger the victim, the higher the advertised rates.
  • Poverty- these victims are engage in "survival sex" as the only means of meeting their basic living needs.
  • Female victims significantly out number male victims.  But remember, that there are consistently male victims being sold for commercial sex.

 Signs of trafficking:

The following is a list of potential red flags and indicators of human trafficking to help you recognize the signs.  If you see any of these red flags, contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 for specialized victim services referrals or to report the situation. 

The presence of these red flags is an indication that further assessment may be necessary to identify a potential human trafficking situation.  This list is not exhaustive and represents only a selection of possible indicators.  Also, the red flags in this list may not be present in all trafficking cases and are not cumulative.  Indicators reference conditions a potential victim might exhibit.

Lack of Control:

  • Have few or no personal possessions (Traveling without luggage)
  • 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)

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

Poor Physical Health:

  • Shows signs of physical and/or sexual abuse, physical restraint, confinement, or torture
  • Lacks medical care and/or is denied medical services by employer
  • Appears malnourished or shows signs of repeated exposure to harmful chemicals

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.)


  • 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

Questions to Ask

Assuming you have the opportunity to speak with a potential victim privately and without jeopardizing the victim's safety becuase the trafficker is watching, here are some sample questions to ask to follow up on the red flags you became alert to:

  • Can you leave your job if you want to?
  • Can you come and go as you please?
  • Have you been hurt or threatened if you tried to leave?
  • Has your family been threatened?
  • Do you live with your employer?
  • Where do you sleep and eat?
  • Are you in debt to your employer?
  • Doe you have your passport/identification?

1-888-373-7888 National Human Trafficking Hotline

Call the National Human Trafficking Hotline, a national 24-hour, toll-free, multilingual anti-trafficking hotline 1-888-373-7888 to report a tip; connect with anti-trafficking services in your area; or request training and technical assistance, general information, or specific anti-trafficking resources.  The Hotline is equipped to handle calls from all regions of the United States from a wider range of callers including, but not limited to: potential trafficking victims, community members, law enforcement, medical professionals, legal professionals, service providers, researchers, students, and policymakers.