Analyzing the Demand Aspect of Sex Trafficking: Addressing the Market through Legislation and Tactics

Jessica A. Brautigam1, James B. Caruthers1, Ashley D. Knarr1, Todd J. Latiolais2, Alice Li3, Paul Osadebe4, Benjamin P. Rowe*, 5
1 Children at Risk, 2900 Weslayan, Suite 400 Houston, Texas 77027, USA
2 Center to End the Trafficking & Exploitation of Children at Risk Houston, Texas 77027, USA
3 Columbia Law School, 419 West 115th Street #52 New York, NY 10025, USA
4 University of Texas School of Law Austin, Texas 78705, USA
5 University of Houston Law Center Houston, Texas 77004, USA

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Creative Commons License
© Brautigam et al.; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the University of Houston Law Center Houston, Texas 77004; Tel: +214-450-9797; E-mail:


Human trafficking is a serious human rights violation. To combat human trafficking, the United States government and the State of Texas are shifting policies towards addressing the demand for commercial sex in an attempt to disrupt the trafficking “market.” In order to better understand the sex trafficking market, we examine its components, specifically: suppliers, the supply of victims, and purchasers of victims. This article also provides an overview of federal and Texas anti-trafficking laws and how these laws address demand within their texts. Finally, the article provides an overview of some common demand reduction techniques.

Keywords: Commercial sex, Legislation, Sex trafficking, Tactics.