Information About Sex Trafficking

11 Sex Trafficking Realities And Scams We All Need To Know

Sex trafficking is an underdiscussed issue. It's time to talk.

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Sex trafficking is painfully real: it affects thousands in the U.S. each year and millions worldwide. While survivors are in no way at fault for what happened to them, we can stay informed about scams, resources, and other signs to help keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.

Content warning: #2 has a graphic photo.

1. Most importantly, know the resources available if you think that you or someone else is being trafficked.

https://www.modernslaveryresearch.org/education/

The National Human Trafficking Hotline: 1-888-373-7888 (TTY: 711)

Text: 233733

2. Be able to recognize the signs of a perpetrator.

https://thrivedetroit.net/tag/sex-trafficking/

The perpetrator may be controlling, significantly older, promising things too good to be true, buying expensive items, speaking vaguely about his or her profession, being pushy about sex, making the survivor feel responsible for his/her finances or encouraging illegal activities.

3. Be able to recognize the signs of a survivor.

https://www.socialworkhelper.com/2017/08/14/help-human-trafficking-survivors/

The survivor may have signs of physical abuse, unexplained absences from class, be tired, withdrawn, wearing expensive items, have a new tattoo (could be used to brand the survivor by the perpetrator) or engage in oversexualized behavior as a coping mechanism.

4. Know the possible "someone complimented you..." scam.

https://twitter.com/abberdabs897/status/1039226080597557250/photo/1

Clicking the link allows traffickers to track your location.

5. Know the possible "after school job" scam.

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10209997984254504&set=a.3839081503857&type=3&theater

This is an example of "too good to be true" signs of sex trafficking.

6. Know the possible "mother god" scam.

https://twitter.com/abberdabs897/status/1039226080597557250/photo/1

Many people have attested to this one over social media. However, some people also say that this is not a sex trafficking scam. Regardless and unfortunately, this scam puts religious people in the wrong light.

7. Know the fake college students scam.

People posing as first-year females at NC State University and/or UNC-Chapel Hill have Instagrams @sarah_ferrell_ and @clairesani. Reports have been made that they have come into dorms while people sleep.

8. Know the prominence of this issue.

https://jjie.org/2014/01/23/humans-not-for-sale-federal-and-state-trafficking-legislation/

Statistics show that 4.5 million people around the world are survivors and that one in sex runaway children are survivors. In 2017 in the U.S., 8,524 cases were reported — and I have no doubt this is an underreported issue since the conditions are so dangerous and secretive.

9 Know ways to support survivors.

https://osapr.harvard.edu/pages/support-a-survivor

Never blame survivors for what they're going through. Approach them with loving concern, not accusations. Try to learn more about the issue. Be there for them when they need to talk. Suggest they call the human trafficking hotline.

10. Know the stigma associated with survivors.

https://www.dhs.gov/blue-campaign/infographic

Not all survivors are female; not all perpetrators are male. Not all survivors are low income or desperate for money.

11. Know organizations you can get involved in if you're interested in doing more to help.

http://www.utoledo.edu/hhs/htsji/organizations.html

A multitude of these organizations exist, ranging from ones focusing on policy and advocacy, male survivors, second-generation trafficking and more.

I want you to remember this: sex trafficking is a serious issue, and prevention is possible. Save yourself and your friends by staying informed about the signs and resources.

You are more powerful than you think.

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A list Of 15 Inspiring Words That Mean So Much

A single word can mean a lot.
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Positivity is so important in life. A lot of times we always go to quotes for empowerment but I have realized that just one word can be just as powerful. Here is a list of inspiring words.

1. Worthy

Realizing your self-worth is important. Self-worth can really make or break a persons personality. Always know that you are worthy of respect. And also, never compare yourself to others.

2. Courage

Be courageous in life. Life has so many opportunities so do not be scared to grasp any opportunity that comes your way. You have the ability to do anything you have your heart and mind set to do, even the things that frighten you.

3. Enough

When you are feeling down and feeling that nothing you do is ever good enough, know that you are more than enough. And yes there is always room for improvement but when it comes to my self-worth I always have to remind myself that I am enough.

4. Blessed

Be thankful. A lot of times we forget how blessed we are. We focus so much on stress and the bad things that are going on in our lives that we tend to forget all of the beautiful things we have in life.

5. Focus

Focus on your goals, focus on positive things, and focus on the ones you love. Do not focus on things that will keep you from not reaching your goals and people that do not have good intentions for your life.

6. Laugh

Laughing is one of the best forms of medicine. Life is truly better with laughter.

7. Warrior

Through the good and the bad you are a warrior. Be strong, soldier.

8. Seek

Seek new things. Allow yourself to grow in life. Do not just be stuck.

9. Faith

During the bad times, no matter the circumstances, have faith that everything will be all right.

10. Live

Start living because life is honestly way too short. Live life the way you want to live. Do not let anyone try to control you.

11. Enjoy

Enjoy everything that life has to offer. Enjoy even the littlest of things because, as I said before, life is short. And plus, there is no time to live life with regrets.

12. Believe

Believe in yourself and never stop. Believing in yourself brings so many blessings and opportunities in your life.

13. Serendipity

A lot of times we look for things to fill an empty void that we have. Usually what we are looking for comes when we are not looking at all. Your serendipity will come.

14. Create

Share your ideas with the world. Creativity brings change to your life. However you chose to use your creativity do not be scared to show your intelligence, talent, and passion.

15. Love

The world is already full of so much hate, so love unconditionally with all your heart.

Cover Image Credit: Tanveer Naseer

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Part 1: Necessary Changes

One of my favorite movies is "Fried Green Tomatoes" with Kathy Bates. In the movie Bates' character Evelyn Couch says, "Someone helped put a mirror up in front of my face, and I didn't like what I saw one bit. And you know what I did? I changed." I know the feeling.

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I looked in the mirror over the weekend and didn't like what I saw.

The person I saw looking back at me is petty, selfish, manipulative, and unattractive. It wasn't that I hated what I saw, but I definitely didn't like what I saw either. It's a surreal feeling, looking at yourself through a critical lens, and it doesn't make you feel good in any way shape or form.

The image that I see of myself is not how I want others to perceive me. I want to be someone that people look at and see kindness, compassion, strength, and confidence.

I have enough general life experience to know that these types of changes aren't going to happen overnight, and not all of them will be physical; most of these will have to happen from the inside, from within myself.

When you find out you are all broken and damaged, it's hard to know where to start putting the pieces back together. I figured the best place to start would be the most literal: my actual insides; so, I decided to embark on a deep-cleansing journey to get all of the toxins out of my body, from the inside out.

I found this book on 10-day green smoothie detox stashed away in the dark corner of my bookshelf. The science behind it seems accurate and legitimate. By eliminating certain foods, your body is able to detox itself off of chemicals and foods that are slowing down your metabolism; the smoothies are specifically designed with combinations of foods that help restart your metabolism. Part of the detox process is getting rid of all dependencies on caffeine, alcohol, and sugar.

Every day you are given the recipe for a specific smoothie; you make the smoothie (about 40 ounces) and sip on it throughout the day whenever you get hungry. Every smoothie is a combination of leafy greens, water, fruit, and flax seeds. If you do happen to get hungry throughout the day, you are encouraged to eat raw nuts, hard boiled eggs, and a wide variety of crunchy green vegetables. There is also a detox tea that you have first thing in the morning, but other than that no other beverages are allowed except water.

I know that this is only the beginning of a very long, emotional, and draining journey. But I think I'm at the point in my life where I have to make these changes. I have to put my pieces together, I have to become a normal functioning adult, I have to find out who I am. I think that this is the perfect way to start.

For the next 10 days I am going to be documenting my experiences, how I'm feeling, what my emotions are doing, and any results that I see.

Stay tuned!

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