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KellyGram – National Human Trafficking Prevention Month

 

 

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Awareness Month, with January 11 being designated Human Trafficking Awareness Day, and so I want to dedicate this KellyGram to the victims and survivors of this abhorrent crime and to the South Carolina Task Force who is working tirelessly to eliminate this real and present threat in our state. Being located between the country’s largest city for human trafficking, Atlanta, and Charlotte—which falls within the top ten—South Carolina ranks 16th in terms of reported cases by state. Horry and Richland Counties, both of which I call “home,” rank among the top five counties in South Carolina with respect to reported cases.

South Carolina’s Human Trafficking Task Force is fighting to shut down the illicit industry in our state, and is partnering with local industries and businesses to help raise awareness and reporting of suspected cases. The Task Force has made great strides in fighting the problem and preventing further instances of human trafficking since its inception in 2012, and last year South Carolina was recognized as the most improved state in the country for combatting the epidemic. The Task Force’s 2019 report, which was released today, showed a 360% increase in reported cases in the state, signifying that the Task Force’s efforts to raise awareness are leading to increased recognition and reporting. However, it also shows that trafficking remains prevalent in our state.

Human Trafficking is a crime that hides in plain sight, making it especially important for the public to be aware of warning signs that a person may be a victim. Please take some time out this weekend to review those signs here and write down the number for the Human Trafficking National Hotline: 1-888-373-7888. I also encourage you to join the fight against Human Trafficking by getting involved with Lighthouse for Life or another trusted organization dedicated to putting a stop to this criminal enterprise and helping to support survivors as they restore their lives.  Finally, this is an incredibly important issue, and I ask you to consider helping raise awareness by sharing this information on social media and with friends and family.

Sincerely,

 

Mike Kelly

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