Marla Jones, Managing Editor
FORT PAYNE, Ala.-- The City of Fort Payne painted the town blue for Human Trafficking Awareness Day on January 6.
At Tuesday’s meeting of the Fort Payne City Council, Mayor Brian Baine presented a proclamation to Bonnie Danielle Walters of Family Services of North Alabama. The Council proclaimed January as Human Trafficking Month for the City of Fort Payne. The Council “Went Blue” to promote awareness on Thursday, January 6.
According to the proclamation presented, the United States government estimates that 600,000 to 800,000 individuals are trafficked across international borders each year and are exploited through forced labor and forced sexual activity. The U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking states the United States is the number one consumer of commercial sex worldwide.
In 2017, the University of Alabama identified 1,167 human trafficking victims within the State of Alabama. The Department of Homeland Security identified victims as young as 9 years old.
Members of the community wore blue shirts, that were sold as a fundraiser for Family Services of North Alabama, on Thursday in support.