Yesterday, February 27, 2014, a one day focus on a call to end human trafficking took place on social media. Human trafficking and slavery is not an easy subject to talk about. Many are ignorant to its pervasive existence. Others simply look the other way.
My wife and I joined thousands of others by drawing a red X on our hands as a way to shine a light on this problem. You can search hashtag “enditmovement” on Twitter to see national celebrities, athletes and politicians participating.
Now one day later—Will everyone move on to the next social justice issue or will we take some real, practical steps to end this during our lifetime.
I used to think it was a problem that existed only in other countries. When Danielle and I lived in Pattaya, Thailand we saw and learned more than we cared to know about human trafficking.
Danielle spent a lot of her time working with a prostitution rescue ministry, Tamar Center. Tens of thousands of women, many of them underage, work in the sex industry in Pattaya. Tamar offers a way out by teaching them life and work skills. I
Danielle is leading a team of 10 women on a trip this summer to work with Tamar.
I often visited the Pattaya area jails. After awhile I learned that a lot of illegal immigrants from Cambodia were in jail. ‘Employers’ brought them over for work. However, when the work was completed, they were turned in to the authorities who put them—and their children—in jail.
This stuff happens all over the world. Even right here in the good ol’ USA. In our states. In our cities. In our communities.
The question is—what will I do about it? Or will I just look the other way like it doesn’t exist.
Since I am not an expert, I list here a few links to websites that will tell you about human trafficking and give you practical ways to help end it during our lifetime.
A leader in the fight to end modern-day slavery, Polaris Project is transforming the way communities respond to human trafficking in the U.S. and globally. Polaris Project operates the 24-hour National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline, advocates for strong laws to help victims and prosecute traffickers, provides lifesaving services to survivors, and is a respected source for training and information.