If you have any evidence of human trafficking, or if you are aware of anyone who is being exploited for prostitution, you should call investigators at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security at 1-888-373-7888 immediately.
If you are a survivor and need to speak to someone, please call 1-202-423-0480 for the Survivor by Survivor Hotline, a number staffed by other survivors like you. Or you can visit Courtney’s House online.
These children need our help. Listed below are some ways you can learn more about this issue, and help bring an end to human trafficking today.
- Support Shout Out Loud Productions. Jeanet Ingalls’s commitment to help these children springs from her personal knowledge of their pain. Her documentary is but the first step of her nonprofit organization that will bring awareness and action.
- Sign up to join our mailing list and stay alerted to local activities that help to end trafficking.
- Donate to Shout Out Loud. Donations go to bringing national leaders to the area to do intensive high-quality workshops with volunteers, law enforcement, and policy makers.
- Become a volunteer. Our organization is always looking for support from all types of talents. It is a great way to meet people who care about the same things as you, all while making a difference. Have a skill or talent? Let us know. You may be surprised how your skill or talent may be just what we need.
- The first place to start is by listening. Learn more by inviting Jeanet Ingalls to be a speaker to your organization, club, or neighborhood gathering. You can invite her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Learn how to spot victims. Learn more further down the page.
- Sign up for Google Alerts about trafficking. There are many stories of it going on under people’s noses. These alerts will keep you up-to-date on both the problem, and creative solutions.
- Get familiar with websites on the topic:
http://www.veronicasvoice.org – Prostitution is not a choice
- Read more on the topic – or do one better and start a book club. Read books on the topic, such as “Half the Sky,” by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.
Find appropriate ways to talk to your children about exploitation and consent.
Write a letter to the editor to your local newspaper. Raising awareness with others can help gather needed support for an issue.
Speak to your local elected officials. Even if you don’t know about current policy recommendations, make sure that they take human trafficking seriously and invite them to state their support publicly.
Speak to your local sheriff or chief of police. Ask if they have current training on how to spot victims of trafficking. Encourage local law enforcement to have positive relationships with minority or immigrant groups. These relationships are important to helping victims be encouraged to come forward. Negative relationships with authority perpetuate isolation.
Support your local domestic violence shelters. They often are the who first responders reach out to when they have connected to a trafficked person. Make sure the shelters have the resources to care for people escaping this extreme form of slavery.
Common Signs of a Trafficked Person
Signs of sexual, physical, mental or emotional abuse – including burns, scars, or bruises at various stages of healing
Appear unusually fearful or anxious for themselves or family members
Isolation – no access to family members or friends
Inability to speak to individual alone
Answers appear to be scripted and rehearsed
Living in the workplace or with employer
Submissive or fearful toward perpetrator
Identification/documents confiscated by employer or someone else
Have tattoos or other marks indicating ownership by their exploiter – “branding”
Working unusually long hours, no access to their wages, and/or little, if any, time off
Unpaid or paid very little
Not in school or significant gaps in schooling