They come from places like Vietnam, China, Mexico and Guatemala, lured by promises of better-paying jobs and legal immigration. Instead, they’re smuggled into the U.S., forced to work around the clock as bussers, wait staff and cooks, and housed in cramped living quarters. For this, they must pay exorbitant fees that become an insurmountable debt, even as their pay is often withheld, stolen or unfairly docked.
In restaurants, bars and food trucks across America, many workers are entrapped in a form of modern slavery. That’s according to a new report by Polaris, an organization that fights human trafficking and helps survivors.
In the report the group offers a detailed portrait of human trafficking as it occurs in the U.S., breaking it down into 25 distinct business models, from nail salons to hotel work and domestic service.
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