Mary Alice Reporting –
Ahead of a large event happening in Stark County this weekend, the Tusc Against Trafficking group has increased signage highlight signs and a hotline number.
Any bigger event typically increases trafficking activity and sexual violence incidents.
Coordinator Kristi Campbell explains ahead of any localized event where a greater visitor turnout is anticipated they increase their presence.
“We make sure that we participate in different visibility campaigns throughout the years. Making sure hotline numbers are advertised and visible during large events, messaging on billboards, and awareness posts in common places.”
The Tuscarawas and Carroll County Hotline number is 330-339-1427, and Stark’s crisis number is 330-452-111, and both are available 24/7.
Campbell adds that there is still the idea that human exploitation does not happen around Tuscarawas County, but that’s false, especially with the community in the heart of hotel infrastructure and Interstate 77.
“Because of the nature of trafficking, victims are moved where the demand is located. We often encounter survivors here that were being trafficked somewhere else where there was more demand or if there are large events in the area, sometimes we encounter survivors who are from here.”
According to the Stark Help Central, human trafficking can affect any age, race, gender, or income and is considered as a hidden crime with known victims an average age of 13 when they are first exploited.
Signs of someone being trafficked can include being dressed a certain way, they don’t speak for themselves, they may have signs of physical abuse, or give vague answers.
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