What can we do to prevent human trafficking?
Ways you can get involved.
Human Trafficking continues to be a global issue, affecting millions of people on an annual basis. According to the Department of Homeland Security, “Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery, and involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to exploit human beings for some type of labor or commercial sex purpose. Every year, millions of men, women and children worldwide—including in the United States—are victims of human trafficking.” Human trafficking continues to be one the most lucrative forms of business in the world. However, more non-government, grassroots efforts, not-for profits, governments, and advocacy agencies are taking stronger stances against the international business of human trafficking.
Even though this market spreads far and wide, there are many who are taking a stand and increasing efforts to assist victims and their loved ones who find themselves involved in this serious and often times life-threatening situation. So, how do you get involved and make a difference? Here are a few suggestions:
- Buy responsibly – Fair Trade items
- Work on “understanding” of victim-centered approach and have a brown bag lunch to fully discuss what this means and what is missing from this model to stop human trafficking
- Volunteer at a local shelter, mentor in reading programs
- Know the indicators or red flags of potential labor and sexual trafficking victims
- Program the national hotline number and give this number to 5 other people for them to program in their phones…1-888-3737-888
- If you suspect someone is being trafficked, call the hot-line or your local police agency
- Consider becoming a foster parent
- Being a voice—speak up for those who have no voice
There are also films, books, social media and articles to review such as:
- Finding Dawn (2006)
- Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force facebook page
- PBS Series on Human Trafficking
- The CNN Freedom Project Ending Modern-Day Slavery
- Child Slaves - Slavery: A 21st Century Evil (YouTube)
- The Beginning and End of Rape: Confronting Sexual Violence in Native America (2015), Author: Sarah Deer
- Share the Global Modern Slavery Directory- The Directory contains over 1,700 organizations in 174 countries to assist in providing a safety net for victims.
The agencies, organizations, and resources discussed in the article represent just a handful of services and resources offered to human trafficking victims and the communities who wish to prevent and stop the occurrence of human trafficking. Even though there has been an increase in programs focused on services, there continues to be the need for more policies, procedures, programs, services, laws and statutes that support victims of human trafficking. To learn more about MSUE Government and Public Policy and Michigan Tribal Governance programs please contact Emily Proctor, Tribal Extension Educator with questions or comments at (231)-439-8927 or firstname.lastname@example.org.