50 per cent of commercial sexually exploited children in the United States are boys

Ronald Weitzer, Professor of Sociology at George Washington University and author of ‘Sex Trafficking and the Sex Industry: The Need for Evidence Based Theory and Legislation, explained to AlterNet how misallocating resources exacerbates the issue:

“NGOs have figured out that they can appeal to the public, donors and funders if they emphasize sex trafficking of girls. These organizations have a vested interest in defining the problem in one way over the other. Using the term women and girls frequently has a very clear purpose in attracting government funding, public and media attention but boys who are victimized are being ignored because most of the resources are devoted to girls,” Weitzer said.

In an increasing effort to address this gender gap, experts have begun to focus their attention on external factors that cause boys to fall under the radar, identifying a number of sociological and cultural reasons that contribute to the problem.

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