Sheriff Hickman Urges Residents to Take a Stand Against Human Trafficking
January is Human Trafficking Awareness month. As the peace keepers in Harris County, my deputies and I have a commitment to save victims of human trafficking. According to Free the Captives, a local non-profit and partner with the HCSO, Houston is a hub for both international and domestic sex trafficking - particularly because of major thorough fares that run through Harris County. The county’s booming economy and geographic location make it a hot spot for traffickers. This is why all of us – as residents of Harris County, must stand united against human trafficking. In the 2015 Texas had 1,355 total number calls to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center and 330 cases reported to the hotline. Human trafficking does not just involve force prostitution. It also includes forced domestic servitude and forced labor. It is the victims - above everything else - we should work in a direction to help. Victims who are men, women and children, forced from their lives, taken from their homes, to work in servitude as laborers or sex slaves. Human trafficking affects not just the victims involved, but also their families. We must also work in the direction of prosecuting those who enslave men, women and children. We must also keep in mind that victims of human trafficking are not just from across the border but are also from our community and this is why I call on you to bring forth the same passion for bringing an end to the greatest human rights challenge of our time and help prevent further victimization in our community. I ask that if you have any information that could help save a life of a child, woman or man, please call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center at 1-888-373-7888.