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Local Residents Encouraged To Attend This Month's Human Trafficking Awareness Events

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This month is Human Trafficking Awareness Month, and there are ways local residents can help combat the modern slavery practice.

Speaking on WFSU’s public affairs show Perspectives Thursday, Robin Hassler Thompson laid out some ways interested residents can do their part in fighting human trafficking. She’s the Executive Director of The Survive and Thrive Advocacy Center, or STAC, in the Big Bend.

“Whoever you are, as you’re a member of the PTA or a running group, or a faith community, know that you can become aware of this issue and bring it to the people in your groups to share what human trafficking is,” said Hassler Thompson. “We’ve talked about this a lot, but also when you see, what you can do, how you should report to law enforcement—human trafficking hotline is 1-888-373-7888—how you can share that number.”

Hassler Thompson says there are also a number of events her group is hosting this month that area residents can not only attend, but help with the actual events as well.

“You know, we are having a big faith event on the 13th, being coordinated with Temple Israel and led also by Good Shepherd Catholic Church ecumenical program,” she added. “We’re having films, food chains, very young girls are being shown on FSU campus and downtown here. We’re having a legal program. We’re having a program for the healthcare sector.”

Other events include a human trafficking 5k run and a forum.

“There’s a 5k run on the 20th. We have a big event in Gadsden County on the 20th, which everybody should check out as well,” continued Hassler Thompson. “That’s a Community Taking Action forum as well as a big, big conference at the end of the month on the 31st through February 2, sponsored by FSU’s Human Rights Center here at the Turnbull Center.”

For more information, visit www.surviveandthriveadvocacy.org.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.