Locksmith Plus Inc, is also a security company. Therefore, we took on a huge concern to us. This is a guide to help protect you are your loved ones against the awful realities of human trafficking.
Human trafficking is horrific, and unfortunately, it’s an increasing concern all around the world. As a locksmithing business we care immensely about the safety of the public, and hope to make even a small positive impact, lowering the number of offenses. Statistics show that there are at least 20.9 million cases of human trafficking globally, and the number is increasing rapidly. Human trafficking is the fastest growing violent crime worldwide. This blog post is intended to educate readers, prepare readers in protecting themselves, and shed light on the present darkness. When light clashes with darkness, change approaches.
What is Human Trafficking, and why does it happen?
“Human trafficking is a form of modern slavery — a multibillion-dollar criminal industry that denies freedom to 20.9 million people around the world. And no matter where you live, chances are it’s happening nearby. From the girl forced into prostitution at a truck stop, to the man discovered in a restaurant kitchen, stripped of his passport and held against his will. All trafficking victims share one essential experience: the loss of freedom.” – Polaris, Freedom Happens Now
What makes someone a target?
- Statistics show that 55% of victims are women, and 26% are children. This makes women and children targets simply because of their gender and age.
- Appearing vulnerable (being alone)
- Homeless individuals
- People in need of resources
How do you know when you’ve been targeted?
There is no sure way to know when someone has been targeted for human trafficking, but there are signs to look for. Here are some red-flags:
- Abductors will usually approach their victim while they are alone.
- While out with a victim, the abductor will always use cash when paying, and will likely ask to use the victim’s credit card. They do this to avoid tracking.
- The forcing of drug or alcohol abuse.
- An abductor will typically say they are from another state or country.
- They may invite their victim to visit them in “their country.”
- When googling an abductors name and place of residence you will find their exact description, but the picture will be of someone else.
- Solicitation and force of unwanted sexual advances.
- When a victim mentions family and friends nearby the abductor may seem irritated or put off by it.
When you notice these signs how do you protect yourself?
- If you notice these signs, report them to police, family and friends.
- Do not reveal personal information.
- Get to a safe place as quickly as possible.
- Learn self defense
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Carry pepper spray.
- If in conversation with the person of concern, talk about your support of firearms with confidence.
- If on a date do not leave the table until the night is over. You don’t want to leave the table giving them a chance to slip something into your drink.
- They will have inconsistencies in their stories (pay attention)
- Allow at least 3 friends or relatives to track your cell device.
- If you are attacked make a scene, scream, yell fire, use a whistle or pepper spray (if you have it), and fight against them with everything you have.
How do you know if someone around you is a victim of human trafficking?
There are many red flags to look for when attempting to identify a trafficking victim. Most of them will appear underfed, pale faced (due to lack of vitamins), there may be signs of physical abuse, such as bruising, cuts, broken limbs etc… They may avoid eye contact and speak as though they are following a script. Many times they will have no identification on them, and will trip on their words when questioned about their name, place of residence, or other personal information. They may work extremely long hours, and yet lack personal hygiene or possessions. It’s common for human trafficked victims to refuse going anywhere alone. Many victims are not allowed to go anywhere alone. It could be portrayed that they don’t want to be away from their abductor, but be aware that even those who are “in a relationship and uninterested in going anywhere without their partner ” may in fact be acting a part out of fear.
If you notice these signs around you or someone you know, report your concern. Sex trafficking needs to be stopped, and it doesn’t start and end with awareness. The power of voice will change our world for the better. Speak up, and provide resources to potential victims (when able to do so safely). Make sure you are aware of what is going on around you, and take the necessary steps in protecting yourself and those you love.
National Human Trafficking Hotline: 1 (888) 373-7888
Website address: traffickingresourcecenter.org
If you have any additional questions or would like to discuss security options, give one of our Locksmiths a call!