Bowling Green organization helps kids escape human trafficking
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) - Jan 11 is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day.
According to Kentucky’s Cabinet for Health and Family Services, there were 206 incidences of human trafficking against a minor in 2020. Missy cunningham, co-founder of Phoenix Rising, an organization that fights juvenile trafficking, says their goal is to help juveniles who are being trafficked in Kentucky.
The organization trains foster families and other organizations to recognize the signs of human trafficking. Cunningham says the kids might be withdrawn, very shy, or hyper-vigilant.
“If we talk to the adult or the person who’s reporting it, we always tell them to either contact the human trafficking hotline or we contact authorities because we can’t--we can’t help them get out of the situation they’re in but we know the people who can,” Cunningham explains.
Phoenix rising held a candlelight vigil in honor of the victims of human trafficking. Cunningham says not all of them passed while they were being trafficked, but even those who escape, suffer from severe medical issues.
Another way Kentucky is fighting against human trafficking--Attorney General Daniel Cameron held a press conference to introduce the statewide campaign “Your Eyes Save Lives.” Attorney General Cameron says he wants every Kentuckian to be able to spot the signs and report anything suspicious to the authorities.
”’ Your Eyes Save Lives’ campaign is built upon and around a simple concept--that we know and understand the signs of human trafficking. My eyes, your eyes, and the eyes of every Kentuckian can be used to report suspected human trafficking,” Cameron explains passionately.
The National Human Trafficking Hotline is 1-888-373-7888. You can also visit the hotline’s official website here for more information and statistics.
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