Child Prostitution Believed On The Rise, Fueled By Internet


Nearly a third of the estimated 1.6 million children who run away or are kicked out of their homes each year engage in sex for food, drugs, or a place to stay, a kind of dangerous barter system can quickly escalate into more formalized prostitution, the New York Times reports.

Estimates of how many children are involved in prostitution range from thousands to tens of thousands. More solid numbers do not exist, in part because the Department of Justice has yet to study the matter even though Congress authorized it to do so in 2005 as part of a nationwide study of the illegal commercial sex industry. Many child welfare advocates and officials in government and law enforcement believe that the problem of prostituted children has grown, especially as the Internet has made finding clients easier.

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