The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Human trafficking can happen to you

Collegian+Logo
Collegian Logo
January 29, 2020 | Elyssa Gideon | reporter

Imagine having a friend who  isn’t close with their family, and are working their way through college on a low wage. They see a sign at a local coffee shop for a job offering $500 a week. The job starts out easy, posing in cute gear or just being their boss’ date for a nice dinner. This boss buys them things, tells them how smart and beautiful they are and wants to spend all his time with her. 

Unfortunately, stories like these are what pulls people into human trafficking. The boss in the above story seems nice but that friend doesn’t realize he is isolating her and making her depend on him. Eventually, the asks get bigger. 

I volunteer with Unbound, an anti-human trafficking non-profit who advocates for survivors, teaches medical professionals, social workers and even children in schools on how to react to human trafficking. 

If no one knows what they are looking for, it’s difficult to report. If no one is aware of what grooming can look like, it’s hard to understand what is happening to them. After all, trafficking can happen anywhere, to anyone and by anyone. 

Personally, Unbound debunked a lot of myths for me. The organization showed me that anyone could be a trafficker. Although there are life issues that can make someone more susceptible, no one is immune. 

According to the Texas Attorney General’s website, there are 79,000 victims of youth and minor sex trafficking in Texas at any time. 

January is human trafficking awareness month and the perfect time to spread the word that human trafficking is not just a problem in developing nations. There are more people living through slavery today than any other time in history. There is always something each of us can do to turn that around, one person at a time. 

If you suspect human trafficking is happening near you, or if you are being trafficked, after calling the police, please call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888, text “Help” or “Info” at 233733, or you can email the hotline at Report@PolarisProject.org.

Donate to The Collegian

Your donation will support the student journalists of Tarrant County College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Collegian