Craig Expresses Support For Efforts To Fight Against Human Trafficking
Commends eighth annual Statehouse summit to raise awareness, inspire dialogue
February 03, 2017
[ Hearcel F. Craig Home | Hearcel F. Craig Press ]

State Rep. Hearcel Craig (D-Columbus) applauded the awareness raised by this week’s eighth annual Human Trafficking Awareness Day at the Ohio Statehouse. The event, organized by state Rep. Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo), brought together law enforcement officials, advocates and survivors from all over the nation for a day of discussion on ways to raise awareness and fight back against human trafficking in Ohio.

“Human trafficking isn’t a problem from centuries ago or that happens only in far off lands – it affects thousands of vulnerable Ohioans today in communities across the state,” said Craig, who gave the invocation at the event. “For this reason, Human Trafficking Awareness Day is so vital to our continued efforts to raise awareness and develop strategies to finally bring an end to modern day slavery.” 

Numerous state officials and anti-trafficking advocates delivered remarks during the morning session, and hundreds of event attendees later participated in breakout panels focused on law enforcement and social work topics. A portion of the afternoon was reserved for human trafficking survivors to share their experiences.

This year’s keynote speaker was Dr. Elaine Richardson, an author, artist, Ohio State University professor and human trafficking survivor. 

Human trafficking is estimated to affect more than 1,000 Ohio children every year, and more than 3,000 Ohio children are considered to be at high risk for trafficking. According to the U.S. Federal Bureau of Information Crime Reports, Ohio has ranked as high as fifth among all states in total reported human trafficking cases, with Toledo ranking as the fourth highest city in the nation for recruiting victims into the illegal trade. 

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