One thing we know, human trafficking continues even with social distancing. In fact, COVID-19 created a perfect storm for exploiting our community.
Traffickers are grooming young boys and girls on social media. They haven’t stopped targeting vulnerable people, desperate to pay their mortgages and feed their families.
Although this is a harsh reality in our city, we haven’t stop fighting for the safety of our families, friends, and neighbors. We know lives depend on us.
For the last 7 weeks, we’ve been continuing our work protecting people struggling with homelessness, substance use, isolation, unemployment.
To fulfill our duty to protect our entire community and help flatten the curve, we quickly pivoted all our programs to fit the “new normal.”
Youth are staying safe from traffickers online through the prevention education videos developed by our team. Our relationships with survivors continue to strengthen as we send encouraging letters and videos.
Clients in shelters, Spanish-speaking communities, and refugee and immigrant communities are receiving life-saving resources through the PSA’S we provide to our partners.
Health professionals, first responders, and our community have access to our webinars for free, so they can continue to fight human trafficking.
We continue to help survivors escape to safety.
As social distancing incrementally lifts, we are considering how and when we will transition back to providing in-person services, while taking precautions to keep our team and our clients safe.
These are hard times. However, my heart is full of gratitude for the emails, phone calls, and messages we have received from you, asking how we are doing and what you can do to help.
Thank you for your love, support, and engagement. We can’t do our work without you. Together with hope and action, we will build a future where all live free.
Timeka Walker, LMSW | Executive Director