Raise Awareness During National Human Trafficking Prevention Month
January has been dedicated as National Human Trafficking Prevention Month to raise awareness about human trafficking and to educate the public about how to identify and prevent this crime. During this month, we also recognize and appreciate the efforts of anti-trafficking entities, law enforcement agencies, survivor advocates, communities of faith, and volunteers around the world to combat human trafficking.
- 90% of high schools researched across San Diego County reported cases of sex trafficking
- The average age of entry into sex trafficking is 16 years old
- The sex economy is an $810 million illegal industry
- Children as young as 8 years old are being trafficked
“The best protection we can provide our children from human trafficking is education,” says Paige Metz, health and physical education coordinator at the San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE). “Although January has been designated as Human Trafficking Prevention Month, we need to be aware throughout the year, which is why we have curated resources on our website for educators and families to use any time.”
One way to fight human trafficking is to remain vigilant. Signs to look for in someone:
- Showering with gifts or money or becomes involved in an overwhelming, fast-moving, one-sided relationship
- Developing a relationship that seems to close with someone they only know via social media.
- A job opportunity that seems too good to be true
- Appearing to be monitored or controlled by another person
- Not having control of their own identification documents
- Being transported between school and home
- Living in dangerous or crowded conditions provided by an employer
Some highlighted resources include:
- National Human Trafficking Hotline (1-888-373-7888, text 233733).
- Recognizing Signs on the National Human Trafficking Hotline website
- Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children Protocols for Schools
More to explore
The San Diego County Board of Education is accepting online applications for student board members now through Feb. 1 on the SDCOE student board member webpage.
Alicia McBride, an SDCOE teacher in the Juvenile Court and Community Schools East Region, was recently honored by the San Diego County Credit Union as part of its Classroom Heroes program.
The Juvenile Court and Community Schools student representative on the San Diego County Board of Education for November was M’Niya, a senior at San Pasqual Academy.
The Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission selected Mara Madrigal-Weiss, executive director of student wellness and school culture for the San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE), as its chair for the third consecutive year.
The San Diego County Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution endorsing November 2023 as National Native American Heritage Month.
There are many local scholarship and contest opportunities available for students in San Diego County. Check this page often for updates.