Modern-day slavery, or human trafficking exists whenever people are bought and sold for forced labor or commercial sex. Around the world, it is estimated that there are over 40 million slaves today. Human trafficking has been reported in all fifty states, and the number of victims in the United States is estimated in the hundreds of thousands.
While illegal, human trafficking is a booming business. Traffickers recruit out of our schools, online, in shopping malls, as well as the streets and other locations. A large percentage of the people trafficked are women and children. Many of them are used in the sex industry. They are the prostituted people on the street and in private homes, and in legitimate businesses such as restaurants, truck stops and motels. They need to be identified and recovered. As the eyes and ears of America’s roadways, the trucking industry plays a major role in fighting the scourge of human trafficking. Providing the industry with the necessary tools to do that is Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT).
January is National Human Trafficking Awareness Month (NHTAM). This is a time for everyone to educate themselves about human trafficking and how to spot the signs of trafficking. It is also a time to spread that education to workplaces, houses of worship, schools, government leaders and elsewhere.
As part of NHTAM, TAT asks law enforcement partners to fulfill or surpass asks:
- Visit five truck stops/travel plazas with TAT materials, encouraging them to train.
- Visit five trucking and/or bus companies with TAT or BOTL materials, encouraging them to train or offering to train them about human trafficking and conducting a brief training using our training video during January.
- Visit bus terminals with BOTL materials, encouraging them to post awareness posters and train their employees.
- In an area with a high concentration of oilfield or energy workers, share energy-specific resources as is fitting for those oilfield truckers or heavy equipment haulers.
For a complete list of educational and training activities click here.
For those who operate commercial vehicles in New York City, in addition to TAT training, we recommend applying for NYPD Shield as well. This partnership provides the private sector with information on emerging and evolving terrorist threats.