January 11th is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, also known as #WearBlueDay.
Human trafficking remains the second largest and fastest growing criminal industry in the world. It can happen to anyone, no matter race, age, or gender, according to The Department of Homeland Security.
On Thursday, January 11, you can do your part to spread awareness and it is as simple as wearing blue to support the effort.
The Department of Homeland Security is encouraging you to wear a piece blue clothing. You can take a selfie while wearing blue, or with friends, and then use #WearBlueDay while posting on social media platforms to support the campaign. Or tag us on Instagram @MCOCares using #MCOCares.
Below are key signs to help you increase your awareness to combat, and ultimately end, human trafficking.
Key Signs of Potential Human Trafficking Indicators:
• Is the person disoriented or confused, or showing signs of mental or physical abuse?
• Is the person fearful, timid, or submissive and to they avoid eye contact?
• Does the person show signs of having been denied food, water, sleep, or medical care?
• Does the passenger defer to another person to speak for him or her or someone else who seems to be in control of the situation, e.g., where they go or who they talk to?
• Is the passenger (especially children) accompanied by someone claiming to be a parent or guardian who is in fact not related to the child?
• Is the passenger in control of his/her own travel documents?
• Does the person have freedom of movement?
• Is the passenger wearing appropriate clothing for route or destination weather?
• Is the person speaking of modelling, dancing, singing, hospitality job, etc. without knowing who will be meeting him/her upon arrival, and with few details about the job?
• Is the person discreetly using the sign language “HT” symbol?
• What Should you do if you see something suspicious?
• While at the airport, if You….See Something, Say Something Contact 911
• Be observant and the best witness you can be! Provide vital details to law enforcement / Comm. Center Dispatcher
• Unless You are law enforcement, do not confront anyone you suspect of engaging in trafficking. Do not display unusual concern or alarm. Do not try to rescue any possible victim. Do not endanger yourself or others.
To report potential cases of human trafficking within the airport, call 911. If in a dangerous situation related to human trafficking call Department of Homeland Security 1-888-373-7888 or text HELP or INFO to BeFree (233733)
Resources For Additional Information:
Homeland Security’s Blue Campaign – https://www.dhs.gov/blue-campaign
The Lifeboat Project – https://thelifeboatproject.org/