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More than 200 BCOs became certified with Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT) during Appreciation Days. The organization, which helps educate the public about ways to fight human trafficking, was on site to train owner-operators on the signs of the illegal trade, as well as reporting procedures.
Human trafficking is a $32 billion industry which enslaves nearly 21 million people worldwide and is the second fastest growing criminal industry according to TAT. Traffickers recruit online, in schools, shopping malls and in legitimate businesses such as restaurants, truck stops and motels. Truckers Against Trafficking recognizes that truckers and others in the transportation industry are the eyes and ears of U.S. highways and uniquely positioned to make a difference in the lives of those who are abused and prostituted in the trafficking industry.
TAT training videos, wallet cards and other materials are used to certify members of the trucking industry so that when they suspect human trafficking, they can alert the proper authorities.
On the TAT Facebook page, the group praised Landstar BCOs’ participation in the certification process. “During our training sessions, we had in-depth and really enlightened conversations with so many drivers about human trafficking and the underlying causes. We so appreciate Landstar's corporate commitment to fighting human trafficking, but also the incredible owner-operators who have such big hearts and want to end injustice for those being prostituted against their will.”
TAT sold 30 trailer stickers and gave out hundreds of TAT window decals and wallet cards detailing steps to follow when trafficking is suspected.
Landstar was just one of many TAT stops on the Freedom Drivers Project tour – a first-of-its-kind mobile exhibit designed to educate members of the trucking industry and general public about the realities of domestic sex trafficking and how the trucking industry is helping combat it. The tour bus features a theater, artifacts from real-life trafficking cases, and portraits of individuals who are working to end human trafficking. For many visitors, the tour bus is their first contact with the illegal trade. All visitors leave with a few simple action steps that anyone can use to help create awareness and fight the problem.
To find out more, visit www.truckersagainsttrafficking.org.
Resources: National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) at 1-888-3737-888.