The United Nations has designated today, July 30 as World Day Against Trafficking in Persons. It is a day to celebrate the thousands of survivors, show support to those that are still stuck in trafficking, and to bring about awareness and change. This is a cause that is near to my heart. Before joining Trades of Hope, I was not aware that trafficking was so huge. It just wasn’t something on my radar before then. I knew that this horrific crime existed, but I never really gave it much thought. Since I joined TOH, my eyes have been opened to this act of violence against others who are most vulnerable like the poor. People are trafficking for many reasons such as forced labor and sexual exploitation. It has become modern day slavery with an estimated 45 million people being held against their will in slavery today. The estimated market value of illicit human trafficking is $150 billion. Every single day people around the world are trafficked for profit. Over 70% of these victims are women and girls, and nearly 1/3 of the victims are children. These numbers are horrifying to me. We MUST fight back against this disgusting crime. Today I just wanted to share some resources and ways you can help end trafficking.
According to Unicef…
“Traffickers look for people living in poverty, those who are desperate, those without legitimate job options, those without educational opportunities, and the ones looking for a way to escape violence. At its most basic form, human trafficking is the buying and selling of people. It exists across continents and is facilitated through a variety of venues, but ultimately – human trafficking is an industry, and it profits from the exploitation of people. Human trafficking has been likened to modern-day slavery, and in many respects, the similarities are obvious.”
Ways to help bring awareness to human trafficking:
- Post about World Day Against Trafficking in Persons on social media using the hashtags EndHumanTrafficking and #HumanTrafficking.
- Wear BLUE (or a blue heart) as a symbol of unity. The Blue Heart is increasingly recognized as the international symbol against human trafficking, representing the sadness of those who are trafficked while reminding us of the cold-heartedness of those who buy and sell human beings.
- Educate yourself and others.
- Donate or volunteer at a local organization that helps survivors.You can easily find an organization near you with a simple Google search. You can also donate to any of the organizations listed below.
- Join me in the fight against human trafficking and poverty as a Trades of Hope Partner or by shopping fair trade.
- Recognize the signs of trafficking. Visit knowthesigns.org.
- Victims may be easily startled or agitated.
- Victims may be unsure of where they are or lack official ID.
- Victims may be unable to explain injuries or possessions.
- Victims may have strange markings/brandings/tattoos.
- Victims may have unexplained hotel use.
- Victims by be accompanied by a suspicious companion.
- Victims be children who are dressed up to look older than they are.
- See something, say something. Keep your eyes open. You can make a report at makeareport.org or contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 or text HELP or INFO to BeFree (233733).
Organizations working to abolish slavery:
- Hope for Justice
- Child Rescue Coalition
- Polaris Project
- Department of Homeland Security Blue Campaign
- Rescue Freedom International
- End It Movement
- International Justice Mission
Take a stand and make a difference. Too many of lives are at stake to remain silent.