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Human Trafficking Awareness Month

Hello All and Happy New Year!

January is Human Trafficking Prevention Month. Every year, we use this time to publicize the pervasive threat of human trafficking, how to identify potential victims, and what can be done to prevent it—especially for the most at-risk children, such as those involved with child welfare. Children involved with child welfare and the juvenile justice system and runaway and homeless youth are particularly vulnerable to become victims of trafficking. The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children reports that 74 percent of likely sex trafficking victims were in the care of social services or foster care at the time they went missing. The Center also found that one in five of reported runaways were probable sex-trafficking victims—up from one in six in 2014.

Child Welfare Information Gateway has created numerous resources that can help protect children and youth from this hidden crime:

  • Child Welfare and Human Trafficking is an issue brief that addresses the challenges of identifying victims, collecting and cross-referencing data, and deciding on common definitions. It provides a broad overview of the crossover between the child welfare field and the work currently being done to prevent and respond to human trafficking of children and youth in the United States.
    • For additional information about the different definitions of human trafficking and a summary of related State laws, see Definitions of Human Trafficking, part of our State Statute series.
  • “Human Trafficking: Protecting Our Youth” is a one-page tip sheet for families that includes summaries about what’s happening, what you may see, and what you can do.
  • An Information Gateway web section devoted to the intersection of human trafficking and child welfare.

Please review and share this information with anyone who will find it beneficial for our community.

Thank you!

Shannon E. Fields, MSW

County Director

Bibb County Department of Family and Children Services

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