Next week, officers with the Michigan State Police, Ohio State Patrol, Illinois State Police, and Indiana State Police will work to increase awareness about human trafficking.
From Jan. 22-26, those four states will team with Truckers Against Trafficking to educate motorists about the signs of human trafficking.
“The Indiana State Police has been working with Truckers Against Trafficking since 2015,” Maj. Jon Smithers, of the Indiana State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division, said in a news release. “The goal of this weeklong, multistate human trafficking initiative is to raise awareness and educate individuals in positions to observe human trafficking taking place. Individuals, such as commercial motor vehicle drivers, public transportation company employees, rest area attendants and truck stop employees, are a force multiplier that can act as the eyes and ears on Indiana’s state highways.”
According to the Truckers Against Trafficking website, there are 40.3 million victims of human trafficking worldwide and hundreds of thousands in the United States. Since the start of Truckers Against Trafficking, hundreds of likely human trafficking cases have been identified.
“It’s a problem that needs to be addressed, and law enforcement is trying to be as proactive as possible,” Michigan State Police Capt. Michael Krumm told Land Line Now.
Krumm also gave some warning signs of human trafficking that truck drivers can look for.
“We always look for young females or young males going from truck to truck at odd hours of the night,” he said. “We look for anyone who appears to be under the direct control of another individual when it seems out of the ordinary. We’ve had a couple of incidents nationwide where people saw those indicators and reported on the hotline. Because of that, we’ve been able to rescue some of those victims.”
The Truckers Against Trafficking hotline is 888-373-7888.
Land Line Now’s Mary McKenna contributed to this report.
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