Local governments play an important and unique role in preventing human trafficking, supporting survivors, and bringing sex and labor traffickers to justice. Cities and county governments can take actions like making sure that key public-facing and other governmental staff or contractors who are inspectors, emergency responders, utility workers or those who are at or near homes and businesses are trained on how to recognize and respond to human trafficking. Local governments can provide local libraries with training and informational resources for the public as many who are vulnerable frequent libraries for online access and other services and assistance. Further, our cities and counties have ongoing and day-to-day roles in creating communities that are fortified against human trafficking. Governments can make sure that systems, laws and resources are in place that create and sustain vibrant economies and good paying jobs, that they allocate resources to protect vulnerable populations, and that they fund housing and other services that can eliminate economic insecurity among residents.

This Proclamation Template is an adaptable resource for any city or county to make their own. “10 Things Local Governments Can Do” is a starting list of ideas for local government action.

Local government leaders can ACT NOW to adopt these ideas and measures. Residents can petition leaders to act, by contacting them directly, speaking at local commission meetings, rallying support among their local civic or other organizations, and building a community that is both aware of human trafficking within its midst and knows how to respond to prevent it and support sex and labor trafficking survivors. We all have a role in ending human trafficking and it truly does take a village!

10 Things Local Governments Can Do to Stop Human Trafficking
10 Things Local Governments Can Do to Stop Human Trafficking
Sample Local Government Proclamation for January 2022

National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

WHEREAS, human trafficking is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of forced labor or sexual servitude; and

WHEREAS, human trafficking is a 150 billion dollar a year global criminal enterprise and is also a civil and human rights violation; and

WHEREAS, the National Human Trafficking Hotline ranks Florida as third in the number of calls reported to the hotline; and

WHEREAS, human traffickers take advantage of crises like the pandemic and natural disasters  by exploiting those who are harmed and economically insecure; and

WHEREAS, COVID-19 has exacerbated existing inequities and inequalities, and harmed already-vulnerable communities including children and youth, persons of color, the LGBTQ+ population, homeless and displaced individuals, deaf and disabled persons, people with substance abuse disorders, immigrants, and individuals who have financial hardships making many more people vulnerable to human traffickers who exploit the lack of basic needs; and

WHEREAS, more community education and action is crucial to eradicating human trafficking in our communities, state and nation; and

WHEREAS, both sex and labor trafficking are present in _____ City/County, and it is important for the community to work together to increase our focus and awareness of both of these forms of human trafficking; and

WHEREAS, local governments can play a vital role in preventing sex and labor trafficking as well as helping to identify and provide support to victims of trafficking by providing education to any governmental staff including inspectors, emergency responders of all kinds, utility workers who are in or near homes or businesses so they can observe and report possible human trafficking, and supporting local libraries with public awareness information and support for vulnerable populations who often use library services for internet access and support; and

WHEREAS, _____ City/County has taken active steps to prevent and eradicate human trafficking including __[list examples of work done in this area locally]________________________; and

WHEREAS, the Survive and Thrive Advocacy Center, this area’s local anti-human trafficking non-profit agency has a strong commitment to fortifying the community against human trafficking, educates the individuals and professionals about how to recognize and respond to human trafficking, assists survivors of human trafficking and collaborates with many in the community to meet this need; and

WHEREAS, the _____ County Sheriff’s office and area law enforcement have focused and strong efforts in place to combat human trafficking; and

WHEREAS, January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month and is observed in counties across the country in order to educate the public and inform them as to taking action to end human trafficking; and

WHEREAS, as a community, _____ City/County takes a stance to support survivors of human trafficking and joins the fight to end human trafficking including raising and catalyzing action, providing training opportunities for county staff and others who may come in contact with human trafficking, supporting local efforts, and taking all necessary steps to support survivors and bring traffickers to justice.

NOW THEREFORE I, __________, Chair of the ________ City/County Commission hereby proclaim January 2022 Human Trafficking and Slavery Prevention Month and further recognize the Survive and Thrive Advocacy Center, the Big Bend Coalition Against Human Trafficking, and the many agencies, businesses, individuals, faith communities, and others for their roles in building awareness and taking action in the local community to end both labor and sex trafficking, and supporting survivors. Henceforward, we will work together to ensure that all those who are vulnerable will be aided and that those within the county and throughout the community will work diligently to end human trafficking in the region.