January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. So, we wanted to bring some education and awareness on the topic. Trafficking is an issue that many do not realize affects our community. Human trafficking is defined as, “the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain a labor or commercial sex act.” So far, every county in Wisconsin has identified cases of trafficking. Trafficking is a crime that affects every age, gender, and culture. Below is a list of warning signs/ red flags to be aware of when it comes to trafficking.
While this may sound disheartening, there are many organizations who are combating trafficking within our community. Many services are available to survivors, including housing, counseling, advocacy, support groups, legal aide, medical care (SANE exams) and many more. As a community, we need to look out for each other and take the time to educate ourselves further. If you want to be involved further, reach out to your local organizations to see what may be of help to them. In Rock County WI, please feel free to reach out to DEFY and ask to speak to me Jen Carlson,
608-364-1083 or firstname.lastname@example.org We can all make a difference in this fight; we just have to take the first step.
Warning Signs/ Red Flags
• Is under 18 and providing commercial sex acts
• Frequently monitored
• Not in control of their own money or identification
• Is fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, or nervous/paranoid
• Shows signs of substance abuse or addiction
• Shows signs of physical and/or sexual abuse
• Lack of knowledge of whereabouts.
• Provides inconsistent stories/ information
• Shows signs of poor hygiene, malnourishment, and/or fatigue
• Avoids eye contact
• Not able to speak for themselves. May sound “coached” to say certain things.