January is Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month

January is Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month

On Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022, the Pierce County Council proclaimed January as “Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention” month through Resolution R2021-224.

Pierce County is supporting National Human Trafficking Awareness Month this January by putting up posters across our community so that victims of trafficking can learn how to access help. The National Human Trafficking Hotline received more that 22,000 calls in 2019 alone – and they believe that is only a fraction of the people who are being exploited in America.

To show support, my office joined the Not Alone campaign along with many other community partners and jurisdictions across the county and state. I believe in raising awareness and blanketing our community with the message that there is help. Beyond the proclamation I wanted to take this extra step to raise awareness of the resources and help that is available for people who are being forced into dangerous situations.

#NotAlone Human Trafficking graphic

#NOTALONE kicks off today and is a national human trafficking awareness campaign designed to help people who are being trafficked recognize that there are resources for them to seek help. Help might look like a referral to a social service agency, a connection to law enforcement, or simply a confidential and validating conversation with a Hotline volunteer.

The #NOTALONE campaign was created by the nonprofit BEST (Business Ending Slavery & Trafficking). BEST worked closely with survivors of trafficking to create posters that would catch the attention of someone who was being harmed, even if they only had a few seconds to look at it before moving on.

Through partnerships and conversations, we have the posters in libraries across Pierce County, at county facilities and information should also show up on Pierce Transit buses. We know anyone can be trafficked, including someone who looks just like you or me. Trafficking happens to people of ALL genders, ALL ages and ALL races. They all deserve to be free from harm. Together, we can help end human trafficking.

If you want to learn more about human trafficking and what you can do to help, please take a few minutes to learn more here, or find ways so share the message across your network on social media.

Human trafficking happens in Pierce county. Help us share a message of hope. Your post, tweet or conversation might help save a life.

Stay safe and thanks for helping spread the word!

CM Hitchen first name signature