Human Trafficking in Latino Communities being fought with help of Hotline
Since 2007, the National Human Trafficking Hotline has received 2,200 calls concerning sex trafficking with connections to Mexico or Latin America. The organization that operates the hotline, Polaris, plans to target the Latino demographic, with an emphasis on the Houston area, in its latest anti-trafficking campaign. Polaris is partnering with Hispanic Communications Network, a social media marketing company serving U.S. Hispanic communities, to release all-Spanish public service announcements, social media strategies, celebrity endorsements and survivor testimonies throughout the next few months. The awareness campaign will be geared toward raising awareness in the Hispanic community nationwide. My Lo Cook, Polaris’ strategic initiatives director for Mexico, stated the following in a release in October,
When communities are equipped to recognize the signs of sex trafficking and know there’s a trusted resource available to them 24 hours a day, seven days a week, they can play a critical role in the fight against this crime.
The awareness campaign’s official title is Únete a la Solución, or Join the Solution. According to Polaris’ CEO Bradley Myles, Polaris has identified sex trafficking of young women, often minors, from Mexico and Latin America as one of the most prevalent forms of exploitation. Data collected by Polaris has identified over 4,300 sex trafficking victims with ties to Mexico or Central America. Over 88 percent of those victims were women and 45 percent were minors. Hopefully Polaris can expand their efforts to California and continue to do a great service for Latino communities nationwide. The hotline number is 1 (888) 373-7888.