5 Things You Can Do to Take Action Against Human Trafficking

According to the Polaris Project, there are 20.9 million victims of human trafficking worldwide. No matter where you live, work or play, it’s happening in your area. Pam Hamilton, LCSW who specializes in Human Trafficking Training at Cornerstones of Care and who was appointed to the Missouri Human Trafficking Task Force earlier this year says, “Raising awareness to the public is crucial to human trafficking cases being recognized for what they are. Each of us has a part to play in eradicating this harsh reality.”

If we stand together, we can put an end to human trafficking in our communities. Here are five things you can do to take action against human trafficking:

Educate yourself.

Education is key, and thankfully there are some great resources out there. Learn what has been reported in your state and become familiar with the top industries of human trafficking. The Human Trafficking hotline provides data and information for each state.

In Missouri, sex trafficking is the most reported form, but the top industry for labor trafficking is traveling sales crews. Check the known statistics for your state here.

Talk to children and teens in your life about sextortion.

Sextortion is a relatively new form of sexual exploitation that occurs primarily online, when a child or teen is blackmailed into sending sexual content, such as photos and videos.  Talk to the children and teens in your life about sextortion and what to do if they’ve experienced it, or know someone who has.

Download three apps.

The Ethical Barcode app can be used whenever you go shopping. Scan the barcode of any product in the grocery store to quickly discover who manufactured it and what they stand for. This helps you make informed purchases and uncover what you’re truly supporting when you spend money at the grocery store.

The TraffickCam app can be used when you’re on vacation or traveling for business. By uploading photos of your hotel rooms and Airbnb rooms, you’re helping law enforcement recognize and determine where perpetrators of sex trafficking are committing their crimes.  

The Ban Human Trafficking app is sponsored by the European Union. In this app, users select a character and they are placed into situations where choices you make may lead your character to being trafficked based on your answers.

Memorize the hotline phone number.

In 2016, the national human trafficking hotline, had 31,659 reported human trafficking cases. If you suspect human trafficking, or are in need of services, please make a phone call to 888-373-7888 or text “Be Free” (233733). All reports are confidential and you may remain anonymous. You can also submit your tip online here.

Host a training on Human Trafficking.

We offer a training on human trafficking and child welfare to help raise awareness of our local and federal laws, discuss and educate on the characteristics of traffickers, recruiters and their victims. This training can be tailored based on the needs of the participants. To schedule a training, you can contact us at 816-508-1738 or send an email to training@cornerstonesofcare.org.

Want to learn more about human trafficking? Check out our other blog post on the common indicators of human trafficking.