How to Recognize Human Trafficking- Be Aware
Recognizing someone who is being trafficked is hard. Why? Because it is happening everywhere, right under your nose. In Kansas, the symbol for a trafficking victim is a cloverleaf. Like cloverleafs, they can be found if one knows what to look for. The first step is to be aware, to look at everyone around you in literally every setting. Because victims are everywhere. Grocery stores, schools, coffee shops, gas stations. They are daughters, moms, sisters, aunts, even grandmas. They are hidden in plain sight.
How to Recognize Victims
Some of the trafficking survivors who have come through Homestead have been obvious ones. Girls who have aged out of foster care. Women who dance in clubs. Women in poverty who are at high risk. Those who have low self esteem, are vulnerable, who have had hard upbringings. Those who experienced sexual abuse and other childhood trauma. These follow the statistics of those who are at risk for trafficking. But many of the women have not fit into traditional or statistical norms for those at risk for trafficking. Many were regular moms, wives, middle class members of society, church attenders, soccer moms. Some started with an addiction that led them to the streets. Some started with an online relationship. Some were trafficked by a boyfriend.
How Human Trafficking Happens
Some women find themselves in human trafficking in less obvious ways and it can happen in all demographics and any neighborhood.
What to do if You Think Someone Might be a Victim of Human Trafficking
If you have information about a trafficking situation, here are some tips from the National Human Trafficking Hotline:
The information you provide will be reviewed by the Trafficking Hotline. All reports are confidential and you may remain anonymous. Interpreters are available via phone call only. Learn more about the Hotline's approach and policies regarding reporting trafficking situations to law enforcement.
Report missing children or child pornography to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) at 1-800-THE-LOST (843-5678) or through their Cybertipline.
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