“They think somebody loves them”, tragic stories about human trafficking

Screenshot of Human Trafficking informational video from Chatham-Kent Victim Services. (Photo via YouTube)

Chatham-Kent Victim Services has launched a video series called “Our stories — Human Trafficking in Canada” to better educate the public about human trafficking, what it looks like, and how it can destroy lives.

Executive Director of Chatham-Kent Victim Services Kate do Forno said human trafficking in Canada isn’t glamorous with parties and international travel. She said the majority of it is young women and men being sold, over and over again, within Canadian borders.

“It’s incredibly important that agencies involved in supporting trafficking victims, educate their broader communities about what Human Trafficking is and how to appropriately intervene. We want Canadian families to know what this crime looks like and to know that with support, there’s hope for victims,” said do Forno.

Do Forno said human trafficking is growing everywhere, including Chatham-Kent because it’s slightly off the beaten path, close to the border, and on the Highway 401 corridor. She added her office sees a handful of victims every month and often has repeat visits from the same victims trying to get the help they need.

Do Forno said some human trafficking victims are recruited and groomed locally and some are brought in from elsewhere. She added a traumatic event early in life usually causes the victims to fall prey to human traffickers and drug addiction usually leaves them stuck in the sex trade.

“Human trafficking is yet another way that violence makes its way into our communities,” said Constable Meredith Rota of Chatham-Kent Police Service. “Working collaboratively to ensure all community members can live a life free of violence is a tenant of the relationship between police and victim services.”

Do Forno said fortunately, Chatham-Kent has enough services to help the victims even though some, such as detox, are located outside of the municipality.

She said there are obvious signs that show someone is being trafficked or prostituted and you can click here for more details on how to tell if someone is being trafficked.

The video series is a joint venture with Chatham-Kent police.

You can also listen to a recent Blackburn News podcast series on human trafficking by clicking here. You can also hear the third part of the series below.