timberland kids jackets Human trafficking in the U
“If a child, boy or girl has a boyfriend who is an adult and even if they are like ‘oh no he’s just my friend’huge red flag. If there’s an adult and he friends with a 13 or 14 year old girl on Facebook or Snapchat or something, that’s not normal,” Elisabeth Alquist, a victim advocate in Iron Mountain, said in her speech.
While it is a great tool, the internet is also a hunting ground for these predators.
“That’s one of the great trends that we have been seeing is someone who has met somebody via social media and they build a relationship and they start thinking this is their boyfriend. And then they start getting taken advantage of and sold,” added O’Neil.
“We want to look for warning signs. As human beings we’re very good about thinking that maybe something’s not right. The short answer to those feelings, contact police. That would be a great start,” added Trooper Basanese.
One dangerous stereotype to avoid is to think that only women are the victims of human trafficking.
“It is not a gender issue. It’s males and females. Our children are vulnerable whether they are boys or girls. The children are vulnerable,” added O’Neil.
Since human trafficking is often a crime that is hidden in plain sight, it is important to be aware of its warning signs.