January 11 is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day

Jeanet Ingalls is working on a series of fundraisers in an effort to raise $10,000 to train police departments in handling and identifying human trafficking victims. Shown in her studio on North Street in Pittsfield Ingalls said she uses her art to filte

Members of the Mid-Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force host events

Fedor notes there are many factors that make human trafficking a pervasive problem. However when they get her the boss may take their documents and force them to work long hours for little or no pay, then force them to work extra to pay off living expenses like food and shelter.

At a ceremony in June, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson noted "globally, it's estimated that there are 20 million victims of human trafficking", and that "victims are predominantly women and children".

Some think that human trafficking victims will self-identify. 11, is the actual day when awareness of human trafficking - and strategies to end it forever - are brought under the national spotlight. "Instead of delivering people to better lives, traffickers unjustifiably profit from the labor and toil of their victims, who they force - through violence and intimidation - to work in brothels and factories, on farms and fishing vessels, in private homes, and in countless industries".

Eloise Anderson, secretary for DCF, said human trafficking is a widespread issue, not specific to urban areas. Several Oakland County judges and representatives from the Oakland County Prosecutor's Office, Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and numerous local law enforcement departments and social service agencies will be in attendance to show their support of the ongoing and collaborative effort to fight human trafficking in Oakland County.

Every year, an unknown number of foreign guest workers in South Florida and the rest of the nation disappear into the worlds of sexual slavery and domestic servitude. "It can feel as if his or her entire world has been turned upside down, and - much too often - it can leave wounds that are unseen and which sometimes never truly or fully heal", said Hogan. "I congratulate our attorney general for pursuing these perpetrators and working for the maximum penalty", McCravy said.

"We can not meet this challenge alone", he said, adding it begins with education and continues with discussion. She befriended a man she says forced her into the sex trade.

"I looked at that picture and I determined if I didn't get involved, who would get involved", he said.

Dickey says victims of trafficking or anyone who has information on trafficking crimes can call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888.

All videos and additional resources will be available at the FSPA web site.

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