VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month.
All month long, officials from Samaritan House in Virginia Beach say they will be focusing on raising awareness of the types of human trafficking, support survivors, dispel myths circulating online, and educate via social media campaign and virtual events.
“Since the onset of the pandemic, human trafficking has not slowed, in fact, we are seeing an uptick in cases,” said Robin Gauthier, Executive Director of Samaritan House.
Samaritan House will produce two virtual events designed to raise awareness among the community. The first will be “Violence Across the Lifespan,” a virtual seminar co-hosted with the Norfolk Public Library on Monday, January 11 at 6 p.m.
January 11 is also National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, part of the Department of Homeland Security’s #WearBlue Campaign. Wear blue on January 11 to raise awareness of human trafficking and take photos of friends, family, and colleagues wearing blue clothing and share them on social media using the #WearBlueDay #samhousestrong hashtags.
On January 28 at 12 p.m., officials will release “The Intersectionality of Race and Human Trafficking,” a virtual panel discussion, the second in our SAMtalks series featuring Courtney Pierce, Samaritan House’s Anti-Trafficking Outreach and Direct Service Coordinator.
“Human trafficking is about the exploitation of folks who are all too often apart of marginalized and vulnerable people groups already,” said Courtney Pierce, Anti-Trafficking Outreach and Direct Service Coordinator at Samaritan House.
“COVID 19 has unveiled the intersectionality of vulnerable people groups: Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, people who identify as women, and poor rates are increasing. Trafficking is not new it is just being uncovered.”
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