Sex Trafficking in Mesa County and Colorado
September 20, 2018
In this world, there are many predators who could just as well be our neighbors, teachers, and family members, and we would have no idea. Here in Colorado this is becoming a very real danger to many teenage girls and boys in the form of sex trafficking and human trafficking. As theses dangers start to become very real and hit close to home, many police departments are working with schools to look for signs of trafficking, when a student may be in trouble and what to do if it’s happening.
In the past year there have been many people charged in cases involving child prostitution and trafficking in Colorado–and it continues to get worse. These traffickers usually have a tie to the children either through family or a person of trust in their life. Many traffickers also find vulnerable children online through social media and reach out to them to brainwash them by telling them they love them and care for them. Many children nowadays are so attached to their phones that- they are becoming emotionally detached from human interaction, which is what predators use to their advantage.
The police departments in Colorado are focusing on knowing the signs when someone might be a victim of trafficking, and one of the major ones is an obsession with the phone to the point that any text or call has to be answered immediately or they will panic. More signs are changes in clothing, looks, and personality, more absences in school, having sudden new expensive possessions, being picked up or dropped off at school by someone much older than them and many more. Another major warning sign is hanging out with new friends, especially older ones. Human trafficking is everywhere, even when most people don’t want to admit it, but it can happen anywhere. Knowing the signs and what to do about them is the important thing when saving a child’s life.
Human and sex trafficking is a very real thing that continues to this day and Colorado has decided to step up to help make things better get children out of that life. As we have pushed this issue to the side in the past. As of right now Colorado is trying to come up with new laws or redefining old laws such as the Safe Harbor laws which is still trying to be figured out right now. These laws are to protect and assist children who have been exploited for labor or sex. This will hopefully help us catch more predators and get them off the streets and our children back into their rightful homes. This will help them to be what they were always meant to be and that’s children.
Many survivors want to teach kids and parents about trafficking and how to prevent it from happening . One such survivor, Alex said “The strongest thing we have isn’t our fists, it’s our words. It’s what we do. So fight.” People like her want to help people get out of it if they are in it. This is something they feel needs to be taught to ensure the safety of our youth as well as our young adults. These survivors want to change the next generation for the better and make our world just a little bit better, but to do that everyone needs to understand the signs and how to help a child heal through something that no child should have to go through.