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STOP-IT Initiative Against Human Trafficking Image

STOP-IT Initiative Against Human Trafficking

Provides supportive services to survivors and educates the public to better prevent, identify and respond to human trafficking

STOP-IT Holiday Clothing Drive Image

STOP-IT Holiday Clothing Drive

Donate lightly used clothing now through December 10th.

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STOP-IT 2018 Giving Tree Image

STOP-IT 2018 Giving Tree

Gift an item from a survivor's wishlist by choosing a tag from our 2018 STOP-IT Angel Giving Tree!

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24-Hour Hotline

If you are in need of emergency assistance, please contact our 24-hour hotline at 877.606.3158.

Make Smiles Happen this Christmas

Pay it forward by giving to Survivors of Human Trafficking!

Holiday Clothing Drive Angel Giving Tree

Save the Date

STOP-IT Spring Volunteer Training

Dates: March 2 and 9, 2019
Time: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Location: TBD
Cost: $60 includes materials, light breakfast, and lunch.
**Student Discount Available
CEUs available for the first day. Both dates required.

   

40,200 human trafficking cases have been reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline since 2007.

This form of modern-day enslavement exists all over the United States.

The Salvation Army restores choice to survivors of human trafficking.

The Salvation Army is a leader in the fight against human trafficking. Through trauma-informed strategies, the STOP-IT program offers direct services to all survivors of sex and labor trafficking, regardless of their age, gender, race, sexual orientation, or immigration status. STOP-IT also works with local, state and national partners to educate the community and enhance the larger societal response to human trafficking.

What is Human Trafficking?

Human trafficking is modern-day slavery. Sex trafficking occurs when someone is induced, through the use of force, fraud or coercion to engage in a commercial sex act, or when the person who is induced to perform a commercial sex act is under the age of 18. Labor trafficking occurs when someone is recruited, harbored, transported, provided, or obtained, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion, to work in situations of involuntary servitude, peonage, or debt bondage. These situations are far more common than imagined. Human trafficking happens in both legal visible spaces and in illicit and often stigmatized settings. It happens on our streets, at our businesses, and in our homes. It happens right here.

  • The International Labor Organization estimates that there are 20.9 million victims of human trafficking across the world.
  • Human trafficking impacts people from all walks of life, including U.S. citizens, legal permanent residents, and undocumented people. Since the STOP-IT program's inception, staff has provided social services to over 300 survivors who were forced, tricked or coerced to engage in sex acts or work in a variety of other settings, such as in restaurants, nail salons, factories, private homes, and farms.

STOP-IT helps survivors leave their situation and move forward on their own terms. We connect them with resources for:

 
  • Safe shelter
  • Food
  • Clothing and Toiletries
  • Obtaining Identifying Documents (birth certificates, state IDs, etc.)
  • Medical, Dental and Legal Services
  • Mental Health Services
  • Transportation
  • Tattoo/Branding Removal
  • Education/Employment Skills

In addition to case management and the 24-hour hotline, STOP-IT operates a drop-in center in downtown Chicago for female-identified and non-binary people between the ages of 14 and 30 who have had to trade sex to survive; co-leads the Cook County Human Trafficking Task Force; and conducts training for professionals serving vulnerable populations.


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Here are some indicators which suggest a person may be a victim of human trafficking:

  • No passport of other identifying documentation (or in the possession of someone else)
  • Not speaking on own behalf
  • Evidence of inability to move or leave job or take time off
  • Unpaid for work or compensated very little
  • Lives with co-workers and “employer” – no privacy
  • Works “off the books” in a low-paying job
  • Person is under the age of 18 and is involved in the sex industry.
  • Person has visible signs of abuse including unexplained bruises, black eyes, cuts or marks.
  • Person exhibits behaviors of fear, anxiety, depression or paranoia.
  • Person expresses interest in, or is in a relationship with, adults.
  • Person uses language from “the life,” such as referring to boyfriend as “Daddy.”
  • Person has a tattoo or brand and is reluctant to explain it.
  • Personal has untreated illnesses or infections, particularly sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Person is not in control of own money or identification.
  • Person displays secrecy of whereabouts.
  • Person keeps unusual hours.
  • Person wears new clothes, gets hair/nails done, possesses new material goods with no financial means to obtain these independently.
  • Person is truant or tardy from school.

This list is not exhaustive. One of these indicators on its own may not mean someone is trafficked, but a combination of indicators may amount to a situation of human trafficking.

  • Is the person accompanied by another person who seems controlling?
  • Does the person accompanying him/her insist on doing all the talking or providing information?
  • Do you see or detect physical abuse?
  • Does the person seem submissive or fearful?
  • Does the person have difficulty communicating because of a language or cultural barrier?
  • Does the person have any identification?

If you think you know or have met a victim of human trafficking in the Chicago area, call The Salvation Army’s STOP-IT program hotline at 877.606.3158. You will speak with an outreach worker who can provide further information and assistance. Your call is confidential.

Do not try to remove someone from a dangerous situation on your own or bring them to your home or place of employment. This can be dangerous for yourself and for the survivor, should the trafficker become aware of your location. Instead, try to connect them to resources, only if and when it safe to do so.  

In addition to calling The Salvation Army or the police when you suspect human trafficking, there are many other ways to help in the battle against trafficking.

  • Visit our website and Facebook page regularly and our partners’ pages.
  • Share the information you already have with friends and colleagues. Help us raise awareness by spreading the news.
  • Volunteer with our program. We need volunteers for our 24-hour hotline, drop-in center and more!
  • Sign up for a training session to learn more about trafficking, how to spot it and how to help survivors. Invite your neighbors, colleagues, family and friends!
  • Donate new or gently-used items that would be useful to those leaving the abusive situation. Items such as hygiene products, clothing, bus cards, fans and other household goods are most in need. Professional services (medical/dental visits, counseling, legal support and others) are also needed. Check out our Amazon wish list.
  • Shop for fair trade items and items made by survivors to help them earn a living wage to care for their families.

 

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