Local congressman discussing new approaches to combat human trafficking

Local News

BROWNSVILLE, Texas – U.S. Congressman Henry Cuellar and state representatives from across the country in Washington, D.C. to discuss new approaches to combat the human trafficking crisis. Men, women and children are trafficked from rural to urban areas. The program called “Put The Breaks On Human Trafficking” is underway. The congressman is supporting their efforts through major funding.

Henry Cuellar, “Money’s have been appropriated… But we have to come together.”

Congressman Cuellar confirming that $2.4 billion is secured for the Crime Victims Fund. It is money that will help victims in under served areas. “The State Department says that every year there’s about 14,000 to 17,500 men and women and children that are trafficked from all over the world and brought into the United States. This is a 150 billion dollars worldwide illegal profit.” said Cuellar.

Children from all ages can fall victim to human trafficking. Miranda Burke a supervisor with Common Thread, a project of BCFS Health and Human Services, warns families of the tactics used by traffickers to target children.

“Many times traffickers are looking for vulnerabilities to exploit in different children. That could be basic needs and if there’s a kid that is needing to take the public bus somewhere, or stay at a shelter or go to a food bank, it’s clear that youth might have basic needs that could be filled.” Said Burke.

Experts tell LOCAL 23 the signs to look out for are drastic changes in the appearance and behaviors of children. Burke advises adults to start talking. To find out if a child is falling victim to human trafficking.

To get help or report human trafficking call the National Human Trafficking hotline at 1-888-373-7888 or contact local law enforcement.

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