Jan. is Human Trafficking Prevention Month

Jan. is Human Trafficking Prevention Month

Every January The White House issues a presidential proclamation declaring January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. Human trafficking involves the exploitation of men, women and children with the use of force, fraud or coercion for commercial sex or labor purposes. Because of the complex nature of the crime, perpetrators often operate unnoticed, and victims rarely self-identify.

“Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal industries in the world,” the Ohio Department of Health said. “Annually, the money illegally acquired through human trafficking is estimated to be more than $35 billion, which equals the profits earned by Starbucks, Google and Nike combined. Ohio has ranked as high as fifth among all states in total reported human trafficking cases with Toledo being identified as the fourth highest ranking city in the nation for recruiting victims into the illegal trade.”

Even Wayne County is not exempt from this heinous crime, which must be proactively faced with education and awareness to protect the most vulnerable citizens.

Locally, Wayne Anti-Human Trafficking Coalition is a community initiative to bring awareness and resources to combat human trafficking in the area. WATCh unites and engages professionals and community advocates to respond to all forms of human trafficking through increasing awareness and education while implementing an organized plan to deliver services to victims and prevent the future exploitation of vulnerable citizens.

WATCh is offering a free online event with Angie Giltner, certified human trafficking investigator, to share important information about the various forms of human trafficking, local information, resources and more on Jan. 27 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Lara Kiefer, Wayne County Children’s Advocacy Center executive director, and Nicole Zornes, WATCh facilitator, also will present.
Space is limited, so register in advance at us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_RXZTOYccQVeYZrn65NS3ZQ.

For more information follow WATCh on Facebook (WayneCountyAntihumanTraffickingCoalition).

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