Human Trafficking Resources

Human Trafficking: Screening and Assessment Tools and Practices for Runaway and Homeless Youth Settings Tip Sheet (2024)

Identifying youth at risk of or experiencing human trafficking in RHY settings requires programs to use holistic approaches which include formal and informal strategies. Through screenings and assessments, RHY programs can make appropriate referrals and connections with partner agencies to provide the best service team for each young person. 

  • This tip sheet addresses:
    • How programs prepare for conducting screening and assessments
    • Considerations for implementing and recognizing trafficking in RHY settings 
    • Identifying trafficking by using validated and evidence-based tools  
    • Survivor leadership resources  
    • And more! 

Download the Tip Sheet (English)

  • A la Oficina de Servicios para Familias y Jóvenes (FYSB) y al Centro de Capacitación y Asistencia Técnica y Desarrollo de Capacidades para Jóvenes Fugitivos y Sin Hogar (RHYTTAC) les complace anunciar la disponibilidad de este recurso en español.

An Evidence Review on Prevention, Screening, Assessment, & Intervention for Youth Experiencing Homelessness and Human Trafficking


Youth experiencing homelessness are at a high risk of human trafficking victimization. The Chapin Hall team conducted a rapid evidence review to identify studies that evaluated the outcomes associated with interventions for preventing human trafficking, mitigating risk, or improving outcomes among youth experiencing homelessness. In addition, we sought screening or assessment tools for identifying sex trafficking experience or risk among youth experiencing homelessness.

We retrieved 1,082 records from among an existing youth homelessness evidence library maintained by Chapin Hall, bibliographic databases searches, and supplemental hand searches. We included reports that examined an intervention or prevention program or provided detailed information about screening and assessment for human trafficking among youth experiencing homelessness. We identified four unique interventions evaluated across eight studies and publications that included youth-level outcomes for youth experiencing homelessness and trafficking. We identified 14 unique assessment or screening tools relevant to youth populations who may be experiencing trafficking and/or at-risk for trafficking.

Read the review here: 

An Evidence Review on Prevention, Screening, Assessment, & Intervention for Youth Experiencing Homelessness and Human Trafficking


This tipsheet discusses key strategies to address, prevent, identify, and intervene in situations of peer-to-peer human trafficking recruitment within Runaway and Homeless Youth (RHY settings. Positive Youth Development (PYD), a prosocial evidence-based approach that focuses on identifying youth strengths, increasing protective factors, and building resilience, provides a foundation for this tip sheet. Strengthening family relationships, peer support, positive self-esteem, and opportunities to lead are all aspects of PYD linked to effective human trafficking prevention and intervention, including in situations of peer-to-peer recruitment. Additionally, the strategies presented in this tipsheet are drawn from trauma-informed and public health perspectives, which ensures that responses to peer-to-peer recruitment are supportive of youth by understanding their unique experiences.

What Can Runaway and Homeless Youth (RHY) Programs Do to Identify and Prevent Labor Trafficking Among RHY?

A study conducted by the Modern Slavery Research Project at Loyola University reveals that RHY are particularly vulnerable to being recruited into labor trafficking. Scam traffickers pose as job recruiters to approach RHY and offer them lucrative work opportunities in commission-based, in seemingly legitimate industries, such as sales, modeling, domestic work, and agriculture. RHY programs are in a unique position to decrease risk and identify young people who are victims of labor trafficking or exploitation. This workshop explores the ways labor trafficking affects youth experiencing homelessness, provide tools for identifying and preventing labor trafficking among RHY, and will present practical strategies for incorporating labor trafficking prevention into RHY settings. 

Human Trafficking among Runaway and Homeless Youth

To strengthen the capacity of RHY programs, the Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB) conducted an assessment to learn about the field practices, experiences, challenges, and needs with respect to identifying and supporting RHY at risk or victims of human trafficking. Over 300 RHY programs responded to an online survey, and a small subset participated in focus groups. Their responses provide a snapshot of the impact of human trafficking among the youth served by FYSB RHY funded programs. This factsheet highlights eight key findings from the analysis report to help increase awareness of issues surrounding youth homelessness and human trafficking.

Human Trafficking Prevention: Strategies for Runaway and Homeless Youth Settings

This Issue Brief recognizes the vital role that runaway and homeless youth (RHY) programs can play in the prevention of sex and labor trafficking among runaway and homeless youth. It also highlights the importance of integrating public health, trauma-informed, and positive youth development principles into human trafficking interventions. In addition to highlighting human trafficking (HT) risk factors, the brief offers a variety of HT prevention components that can be easily integrated into programmatic activities, such as discussing with youth how to recognize a "too good to be true" job or building safety nets to support RHY.

SOAR to Health and Wellness: Human Trafficking Training for Youth Service Professionals

Youth and young adult victims of trafficking can present a wide range of physical and psychological health issues and social service needs. This online training aims to educate youth service providers and public health professionals on how to identify, treat, and create a collaborative and appropriate response to vulnerable youth victims of human trafficking. 

Human Trafficking for RHY Serving Agencies: A Resource Guide

"Human Trafficking for Runaway and Homeless Youth (RHY) Serving Agencies: A Resource Guide" is a comprehensive introduction about the intersection of RHY programs and human trafficking. This resource provides information on a wide variety of topics overlapping RHY and human trafficking, including the following and is specifically written to address the unique needs of RHY programs.

  • Legal Definitions
  • The Role of RHY Programs
  • Program Models
  • Building a Collaborative Community Approach

Human Trafficking in Youth-Serving Programs

"Human Trafficking in Youth-serving Programs: A Blueprint for Organizations Working with Street Youth, Homeless Youth, and Youth at Risk” serves as an introduction to important information for any youth-serving organization considering providing services to homeless youth who have been trafficked. The resource addresses issues such as:

  • Common Misconceptions
  • Recruitment into Labor and Sex Trafficking
  • Understanding Risk and Protective Factors
  • Prevention and Intervention
  • Approaches to Work with Trafficked Youth

Labor Trafficking Infographic

This labor trafficking infographic reflects key statistics and findings from a study conducted by Covenant House and the University of Loyola, New Orleans in 11 major cities in the U.S on labor trafficking among RHY. This resource can be easily downloaded, shared, and utilized to discuss the impact of labor trafficking on RHY. 

Online Recruitment of Youth via Social Media and the Internet

This social media document discusses the recruitment of youth through social media platforms and highlights strategies to assist grantees in discussing this topic with youth.

 Poster "RHY are Recruited for Sex and Labor Trafficking in Person and Online"

This poster was designed to increase awareness of the recruitment of RHY into human trafficking. Grantees are encouraged to download or share this poster with local community partners.


Evidence-Based Mental Health Treatment for Human Trafficking Victims

In relation to the Issue Briefs, the Department for Health and Human Services developed additional resources looking at topics in a more in-depth manor. To date, limited research has been conducted to assess the impact of various mental health therapeutic treatments, hindering mental healthcare providers’ understanding of which therapeutic methods work best when treating this population. This particular brief examines the evidence-based research for treating common mental health conditions experienced by victims of human trafficking.

Read the issue brief here:


Human Trafficking Into and Within the U.S.

This paper presents a comprehensive review of current literature on human trafficking into and within the United States. This review of the literature is part of a larger study funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, to examine how HHS programs are currently addressing the needs of victims of human trafficking, including domestic victims, with a priority focus on domestic youth. This study is also structured to identify barriers and promising practices for addressing the needs of victims of human trafficking, with a goal of informing current and future program design and improving services to this extremely vulnerable population.

Learn more and read the paper here:


Human Trafficking Task Force eGuide

Developed in partnership by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) and Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), this Guide is a resource to support established task forces and provide guidance to agencies that are forming task forces. Its purpose is to assist in the development and day to day operations of an anti-human trafficking task force and to provide fundamental guidance for effective task force operations.

Access the eGuide here


Creating and Sustaining a Local Response to Human Trafficking: Compendium of Promising Practices

This compilation of promising practices provides ideas and recommendations from individual Rescue & Restore Regional Program grant partners for organizations in the field of anti-trafficking in persons. Regional anti-trafficking organizations found these practices to be beneficial for the advancement of public awareness of human trafficking, outreach to intermediaries, and the identification of victims of human trafficking nationwide.

Access the resource here: