Jan. 11 is Human Trafficking Awareness Day

Seeking to raise awareness of human trafficking, the Tennessee Department of Health is asking residents to wear blue on Friday.
Jan. 11 is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day and the state health department is urging all Tennesseans to learn about risk factors, red flags and resources for human trafficking to be part of the solution, and possibly help save a life.
The department terms human trafficking as “modern day slavery, the sale of another person for sex,” and says that while the crime is largely hidden, Tennessee “leads the nation” in its approach to addressing the issue.
“The Tennessee Department of Health recognizes human trafficking is a public health concern and we’re working with community organizations and local health departments to provide education and resources to help fight this issue in our state,” said TDH Assistant Commissioner for Family Health and Wellness Morgan McDonald, MD. “We’re also asking Tennesseans to wear blue in observance of National Human Trafficking Awareness Day this Friday, Jan. 11.”
Red flags of human trafficking can include the person:
• Is not free to leave or come and go as he/she wishes
• Is unpaid, paid very little or paid only through tips for his/her work
• Works excessively long or unusual hours
• Is not allowed breaks or suffers under unusual restrictions at work
• Is fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, nervous or paranoid
• Has few or no personal possessions and/or identification documents
• Lacks control of money of his/her own
• Is not allowed or able to speak for himself or herself
• Has numerous inconsistencies in his/her stories
• May show signs of physical and/or sexual abuse, physical restraint, confinement or torture
Know someone who needs help? Contact the Tennessee Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-855-558-6484 or text “BeFree” to 233722. For more information on human trafficking visit www.acf.hhs.gov/trafficking.

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