“A blight on Canada”: MP Arnold Viersen on human trafficking and Pornhub's Montreal HQ

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The FBI has named sex trafficking as one of organized crime's fastest-growing businesses, and one of the largest criminal enterprises in the world.

The United Nations’ International Labour Organization (ILO) estimated annual profits from forced sexual exploitation at $99 billion (U.S), and the same ILO study estimated that 3.8 million adults and 1 million children were victims of forced sexual exploitation in 2016 around the world. 99% of those were women and girls.

Sex trafficking is happening everywhere, even in High Level, Alberta, population 20,000, 735 km north of the capital city of Edmonton. In May, a routine traffic stop led to drug and human trafficking charges against a 30 year old man. 

Conservative MP for the Alberta riding of Peace River—Westlock, Arnold Viersen, is one of four co-chairs of the All Party Parliamentary Group to End Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. 

Since first being elected in 2015, Viersen has positioned himeself as a staunch advocate for women and children, launching a study in 2016 on the effects of violent pornography on children. Now he’s leading the charge against Big Tech for giving a platform to host videos of sex trafficking, sexual exploitation, revenge porn and sexual offences against children. 

PornHub and its Montreal-based parent company, Mind Geek, have recently drawn the attention of American lawmakers, for allegedly letting users stream images of women and girls being assaulted. 

According to the New York Post, “Sen. Ben Sasse urged the Department of Justice in a Monday letter to probe Pornhub and its parent company, MindGeek, over concerns that the popular porn site is littered with clips of sex-trafficking victims — including children.”

“Pornhub’s incredible reach has a much darker side than the image of harmless fun that it tries to project,” Sasse, a Nebraska Republican, wrote to Attorney General William Barr. “In several notable incidents over the past year, Pornhub made content available worldwide showing women and girls that were victims of trafficking being raped and exploited.”

Viersen joins me today in an interview we recorded earlier this week to discuss his ongoing work to protect victims of sex trafficking and stop Big Tech from profiting from sex crimes. Plus, what you can do to help.

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