Super Bowl Trafficking Myths Debunked

Feb 11, 2022

For many years, myths have spread that the Super Bowl and other major sporting events attract an increase in human trafficking. Police and policy makers use this myth as a justification for aggressive ad campaigns, as well as high-profile raids and arrests of consensual sex workers. However, researchers at the University of Texas, Austin and the University of Minnesota recently found that the evidence, “did not support a causal or correlative link between Super Bowls and sex trafficking.”

Freedom Network USA, a group that assists victims and survivors of human trafficking, says the annual focus on sexual exploitation ignores and minimizes other forms of coerced labor such as domestic and farm work that happen year round. They also added that increased local policing around the Super Bowl has not shown any lasting impact on reducing trafficking in that area. Yes, sex workers often travel to places where large numbers of people are congregating and looking to have a good time: because… that’s where the money is! But arresting sex workers does not protect victims of human trafficking, during the Super Bowl, or at any other time of the year.