From the Tulare County District Attorney’s office’s Facebook page:
As part of National Human Trafficking Awareness Month, District Attorney Ward had the opportunity to present an overview of trafficking to the Visalia Republican Women Federated. If you are a civic group or service club looking to learn more about this important topic, contact their office at (559) 636-5494.
We are coming upon a season when many of us will be on the road travelling. While at rest stops and airports, you may come upon a potential trafficking situation.
In a story in IJReview,A trucker shared how he faced such a situation this year and became a lifeline to someone trapped in sex trafficking. He happened to see the face of a distraught girl in a windoof an RV and activity that tipped him off to what was happening. He called authorities who arrested two traffickers and rescued a 20-year old female. See the article and video here.
Shared Hope Int’l provides a fact sheet on signs of trafficking while travelling. This includes terms pertaining to sex trafficking one might overhear and signs one may observe about the potential victim, the environment, and circumstances. Download and print to review and have handy when you are travelling.
If you see a potential trafficking situation, you can call the National Human Trafficking Hotline, 888-373-7888, wherever you are at for assistance. They can contact the appropriate local responders and provide guidance to callers.
Are you a trucker or travel frequently? You can be an important aid by being a lookout for potential trafficking. Get resources and assistance from Truckers Against Human Trafficking.
Even if you aren’t a trucker, the Truckers Against Trafficking phone app provides signs of trafficking and numbers to call and is a great resource for anyone.
If you are planning on flying, CNN Freedom Project provide a list of signs, compiled from human trafficking response organizations, to look for in an educational article this summer (visit article for details). These might not mean someone is being trafficked, but could be an indicator. If you suspect a trafficking situation, contact airport authorities, police, or the National Human Trafficking Hotline:
1. A traveler is not dressed appropriately for their route of travel.
2. They have a tattoo with a bar code, the word “Daddy.”
3. They can’t provide details of their departure location, destination, or flight information.
4. Their communication seems scripted, or there are inconsistencies with their story
5. They can’t move freely in an airport or on a plane, or they are being controlled, closely watched or followed.
6 . They are afraid to discuss themselves around others, deferring any attempts at conversation to someone who appears to be controlling them.
7. Child trafficking: A child being trafficked for sexual exploitation may be dressed in a sexualized manner, or seem to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A child may appear to be malnourished and/or shows signs of physical or sexual abuse, such as bruises, scars, or cigarette burns.
Main tip: If anything seems “off,” contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline. Operators are trained to help you.
Chosen Prevention Curriculum This comprehensive video resource reveals the warning signs and sometimes fatal consequences of sex trafficking to equip teens to protect themselves and others from being trapped in the horrific and violent sex industry. DVD sets comes with conversation guides and other helps. DVD versions include a gang edition with information pertinent to sex trafficking within gangs. DVD also has a Spanish Version. You can see the Chosen and Chosen Gang Edition videos on YouTube.
Fresno County’s Centro La Familia has recently launched an educational human trafficking video, now available online and on DVD in English and Spanish. The video is a dramatization that follows the story of a young woman who finds help after being forced into domestic servitude.
The English version was released in January.
The videos can be view and shared through their YouTube channel. Watch the Spanish version here and the English version here. The videos are also on our human trafficking YouTube channel, CV Abolitionists!
This video is also available on DVD. Call Centro La Familia at (559) 237-2961to obtain free copies for your organization’s use. The video is a great educational tool that can be used in waiting rooms, presentations or for training purposes.
Centro La FamiliaFamily Services‘s mission is to empower low-income people to access life sustaining resources. Regarding human trafficking, they do outreach to rural communities, awareness and education to communities, and assist victims of human trafficking by helping them access needed services, as well as other work.
Shared Hope International has released Gang TRAP (Trafficking Response and Prevention) Video Series is a unique training video designed to address the growing trend of sex trafficking cases perpetuated by criminal street gangs. The video targets law enforcement, service providers and prosecutors, offering instruction on gang trafficking dynamics, recruitment and control tactics, professional challenges commonly experienced with these cases, therapeutic response and collaboration. The four-part (60 minutes) video series incorporates interviews with experts and survivors across the United States.
Tulare, Fresno, Kern, and Madera Counties have been added to the GraceCity app, a centralized, user-friendly mobile resource app allowing first responders immediate access to long and short term services for exploited and at-risk individuals.
This app will be used by those working with those at-risk or affected by human trafficking and is a major asset in successfully preventing human trafficking and helping survivors to thrive beyond human human trafficking.
We need all those who might have a useful service to sign up in order for the GraceCity app to provide the benefits for which it was designed.
Who should sign up?
This includes primary services, such as health services, social services, mental health services, pro-bono legal services, dental care, housing, etc.
This ALSO includes services that help clients make a new life and thrive outside exploitation, such as child care, job training, tattoo removal, beauty services, tutoring, mentoring, life skills training, etc.
If you know of or are an organization that is interested in being a part of this app, please go to http://www.thegracenetwork.org/resource/ and click the pink agency registration flag in the top right hand corner, labelled, “Join The Fight.”