Ashton Kutcher, the guy we all know from TV shows like ‘That 70’s Show’ and ‘Two And A Half Men’ has recently spoken out on The Today Show about the successes of the organization Thorn. Kutcher worked with his now ex-wife, Demi Moore, to produce an organization to help find sex trafficking and child pornography victims and their abusers.
What is Thorn
Thorn is an organization built to try and minimize the effects of sex trafficking and child pornography online. They work with ‘more than 20 technology companies that lend their knowledge, time and resources to the work that we do’. Some of the companies on this list are Dropbox, Google, Yahoo, and Snapchat, etc.
When Kutcher appeared on ‘The Today Show’ he spoke passionately about the way their company works by ‘building digital tools to fight human trafficking. The purchase and commerce for human trafficking are happening online, just like everything else now, and so we’re building digital tools to fight back against it.”
Kutcher goes on to explain how the company has thus far been successful; “We’ve built a tool to help law enforcement prioritize their caseload and recover victims and find traffickers. And we’ve found and identified and recovered over 6,000 trafficking victims this year. And we’ve found, identified, and recovered 2,000 traffickers.”
This is an incredible outcome! And as the company grows and their database of website contributors becomes then the more success Thorn will gain. However, the organization has ambitious goals and Kutcher. Goes on to explain that
‘“Our next battle, my next commitment…I’m going to make a pledge that I’m going to eliminate child pornography from the internet.”
With such a relevant topic of concern, Thorn has shown that the threat of sex traffickers and abusers isn’t necessarily on the streets, it’s coming from online. And with children having access to the internet from such a young age all over the world, stopping child pornography and sex trafficking is of dire importance.
What the Data Shows
A scary amount of data was collected from sites such as Craigslist that show it as a website that is frequently used in the sex industry.
Even more terrifying is that in 2015, 75% of child sex trafficking survivors Thorn surveyed were sold online at some point.
A survivor spoke to Thorn in 2015, saying that “People are posted and sold online multiple times a day. As far as the ad that was posted up [for me], there was a girl who eerily looked like me…just [like] you can go find a car, there was a picture, and a description, and a price.”
Anti-human trafficking group Polaris reports that The International Labor Organization estimates 4.5 million people are currently working against their will for sex traffickers. And the underground sex economy in 2014 was worth $290 million in Atlanta, Georgia, alone, according to an Urban Institute study.
Check out Ashton Kutcher’s interview below!
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