April 12, 2024

Press Release: Reset180 Recruits Esther Daniel as Executive Director

Nonprofit veteran Esther Daniel Joins the Executive Team

Reston, VA: On Wednesday, April 3, Esther Daniel joined Reset180 as its Executive Director, bringing to bear her 20+ years of management experience in the nonprofit’s fight to end human trafficking.

Daniel joins from International Justice Mission (IJM), where she acted as Global Director of Strategy and Execution for the last 3 of her 17 years there. She brings her anti-trafficking operation skills and her ability to spread awareness, protect victims, and rehabilitate survivors, where she will help uphold the organizations’ three pillars: Prevent, Disrupt, and Restore.

Additionally, Reset180 is confident that Daniel will lead the organization to have a greater community impact because of her nonprofit organization experience, which includes:
•Publishing over 500 articles through digital and print mediums.
•Training 40+ local NGOs, thus increasing NGO-referred cases by 38%.
•Partnering with South Asian governments and law enforcement to rescue 3k children and adults from labor trafficking over the course of 170+ rescue operations.
•Giving trauma-informed aftercare to 10k+ survivors.
•Collaborating with Indian law enforcement and government officials to develop anti-trafficking initiatives.

“I’m incredibly honored to join Reset180, an organization that has already transformed the lives of over 250 survivors through its impactful work. Together, we’ll build on this strong foundation, scale our impact, and continue to bring hope and healing to our communities,” Daniel said.

“We’re excited to have Esther Daniel lead Reset180 in our work to prevent, disrupt, and restore. With her years of experience fighting human trafficking and her servant heart, we know she will scale Reset180’s mission!” said Sherri Cooper, Reset180 Chairwoman.

Reset180 is a nonprofit that has been partnering with the Northern Virginia community since 2014. Their mission is to prevent human trafficking, disrupt the related networks, and restore the lives of those impacted.


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March 12, 2024

Spotlight on Fairfax County: A profile on human trafficking

Jess Bohall

If you follow the trends on human trafficking, you know that solid facts on the issue can be difficult to uncover and verify. Traffickers are constantly evolving their tradecraft as technology changes and methods become more sophisticated. In addition, conditions and characteristics that mark high prevalence areas vary based on geography. For example, methods of trafficking and who is preyed upon looks very different in Ghana than in the United States. Because awareness is a critical first tool to combating trafficking, in this post we are shedding light on some of the characteristics of human trafficking in our own communities in Fairfax County.

Why Fairfax County?

Several factors contribute to the prevalence of human trafficking in Fairfax County. Proximity to major transportation hubs, including Dulles and Reagan airports (both international), major interstate highways, and railways, facilitates the easy movement of traffickers and their victims. In fact, some illicit massage businesses (or IMBs) located in Herndon and Sterling will even advertise that they are a short Uber drive from Dulles.  

Beyond the ease of transit, it is easy for traffickers and their victims to “disappear” into the movement of a highly populated area. Although there is a high potential of being close to trafficking in action, albeit unwittingly, the insular nature of a massive population that is constantly on the move makes it easy to hide in plain sight. 

The DMV area is home to over 5.5 million people and contains vast differences in wealth distribution. Despite its overall prosperity, Fairfax County grapples with sharp economic disparities, rendering vulnerable populations more susceptible to exploitation. Where there is economic need, people can be coerced more easily into a trafficking trap.

Types of trafficking

While all types of human trafficking may exist in Fairfax County, two types that Reset180 has commonly seen are gang sex trafficking and illicit massage businesses or IMBs. Gang sex trafficking happens all over the county in Herndon, Sterling, Loudoun, Ashburn, Fairfax, Chantilly, Manassas, Tysons, Vienna, Woodbridge, and Annandale and so on. Trafficked people who are controlled by gangs are often low-income, minorities, runaways, teenagers, and transient.

It is difficult to know exactly how many IMBs exist in Fairfax County. The nature of illegal businesses harboring and involved in trafficking involves changing storefront names and locations in and out of the area frequently to avoid detection. It can also be difficult to recognize an IMB from a legitimate massage/spa business, but there are signs to be aware of. Before visiting a massage or spa locale, be sure to visit the website and look up reviews. If the website includes models in bikinis and otherwise looks similar to an adult magazine, this is a red flag that it could be an IMB. If reviews are predominantly written by men, this can be another sign of an IMB. If the workers aggressively ask for tips, it could be an indication that it is the only payment they are actually receiving. If workers live in the location of the business, this is another indication of trafficking.

Reset180 Response and Initiatives

Reset180 offers a variety of resources and initiatives to help prevent trafficking. We offer awareness presentations upon request at schools, businesses, churches, sororities, rotary clubs, political committees, associations, and any other groups that come to mind. Please consider requesting this for your group! We also offer awareness van tours and conduct outreach at known IMBs to ensure would-be customers know about the activity occurring there. 

We also contribute to the care, support, and restoration of people caught up in trafficking schemes. This is important work that you can be involved with! 


While trafficking has commonalities the world over, it also takes on some of its own characteristics depending on location. Nurturing a keen awareness of trafficking in your area helps you learn how to spot suspicious activity related to trafficking. The insular nature of many highly populated and diverse areas can also cause one to be unsure whether what they are seeing are red flags. Since we know trafficking can happen in plain sight, err on the side of caution. Reporting is the best policy even if you are not sure that what you are seeing is trafficking. Get involved and support the prevention and disruption of local human trafficking!

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February 8, 2024

5 Ways to Continue Human Trafficking Awareness Beyond January

Jess Bohall

Have you ever heard stories about human trafficking that left you so energized to join the fight you couldn’t wait to begin? Have you realized weeks later that life happened and somehow the intention to get involved got pushed aside? If you answered yes to either of these questions, you are not alone! The month of January is Human Trafficking Prevention Month, but the fight against human trafficking doesn’t end on January 31! If you are still looking for an opportunity to engage in the fight against human trafficking, read on for helpful tips for getting involved beyond January.  

The truth is that for many people the problem of human trafficking feels so big, so awful, and so hidden that we wonder what kind of difference we could even make. Sometimes it just hurts too much to think about such egregious crimes happening to vulnerable people, or the immediacy of daily life means that other tasks have crowded out our good intentions to make a difference. In fact, it is often easier to push the thought of it away instead. But here is the good news: where human trafficking depends on isolating people and ensuring compliance by preying on vulnerabilities, combatting it depends on people uniting through cooperative efforts at every level of involvement, whether big or small.

Here are five ways to get involved in the anti-human trafficking effort today:

1. Educate Yourself and Others

The more we know about trafficking, the more effectively we can combat it. Invest time in educating yourself about the different forms of trafficking, its root causes, and the tactics employed by traffickers. Talk about it within your sphere of influence. Online courses, documentaries, and reputable websites offer helpful resources such as the 2023 TIP Report and Polaris’ informational pages (start here). Locally, Reset180 can help deepen your understanding of and stay up-to-date on the evolving nature of the issue in the Northern Virginia community.

2. Support Anti-Trafficking Organizations

If you are looking for a new cause financially to support in the new year, this is an easy one! Anti-trafficking organizations play a crucial role in prevention, intervention, and survivor support. Supporting local organizations like Reset180 is a powerful way to build resilience against human trafficking within your own community. By supporting Reset180 as an Abolitionist you contribute directly to the mission. You can also volunteer your time and skills, as well as participate in fundraising events. 

3. Know the Signs of Suspicious Activity and How to Report Them

Develop a keen awareness of your surroundings and be vigilant for signs of human trafficking. Be attentive to individuals who exhibit fearful behavior, restricted movement, or signs of physical abuse. Find out more about trafficking indicators here and here. If you witness suspicious activity, report it to law enforcement immediately, and contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888 to make reports confidentially.

4. Raise Awareness in Your Community

Amplifying the conversation on human trafficking is a powerful way to combat a business that relies on isolation, lies, and silence. Participate in or organize community events, workshops, or awareness campaigns to educate people about the signs and techniques of trafficking. Invite a speaker to talk to your group. The more people are aware, the more likely they are to recognize and report trafficking activities. A well-informed community is a resilient one.

5. Advocate for Stronger Legislation

Engage in advocacy efforts to strengthen anti-trafficking laws and policies. Stay informed about current legislation and be an active voice for change. Write letters, attend town hall meetings, or engage with policymakers to express the importance of robust, trauma-informed legal frameworks that protect victims and survivors and hold traffickers accountable. Circle back to your favorite anti-trafficking organizations – there are plenty of opportunities to partner in advocacy with them! 


It is easy to feel overwhelmed or even paralyzed by the problem of human trafficking. But every action, no matter how small, contributes to the larger anti-trafficking effort. Taking the first step is often the hardest but it is the one that will lead to more involvement – and therefore greater impact. Together we can turn the tide on this humanitarian crisis.

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February 1, 2022

Press Release: ​​New data reveals increase in Trafficking Victims in Northern Virginia Region

 Human trafficking victims have increased by 468.3% since January 2021

RESTON, Va., Feb. 1, 2022. New data reveals that victims of human trafficking have increased dramatically in the Northern Virginia region this past year.  In January 2021, 650 individuals were being sold online in a 50-mile radius from Reston, Va. In October 2021, that number had risen to 3,694 individuals. 

 Freedom Signal pulled data from the past years in 2019 through 2021. In 2019, there were 19,873 individuals listed online for sexual services in a 50-mile radius of Reston, Va. In 2020, that number rose to 92,883 and in 2021 the number rose to 121,783 individuals listed online for sale for sexual services. 

“These numbers are shocking and paint a picture of the ongoing need to provide outreach and restorative services to survivors,” said Kay Duffield, Executive Director of Reset180. “Reset180 continues to serve the Northern Virginia community through preventing and disrupting local human trafficking while restoring lives. We continue to need financial partners and volunteers to help us continue the important and life-changing work that we do.” 

January was National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and as it comes to an end, Reset180 urges the community to continue raising awareness around this local, national and global issue. Reset180 exists to prevent and disrupt local human trafficking while restoring lives. 

Reset180 has a trained Speakers Bureau that presents on Human Trafficking 101 at local events who educate on what local human trafficking looks like and how they can identify red flags of someone being trafficked. They have a core team of service providers and volunteers that provide and support survivors who break free of human trafficking. 

Reset180 plans to build a shelter for survivors of human trafficking in 2022 – 2023 as safe shelter is the number one need of trafficked survivors locally and across the nation. Go to Reset180.com today to learn more, request a speaker to spread awareness in your community today, or partner with us to serve and support local human trafficking survivors.

Contact: ExecutiveDirector@reset180.com  

SOURCE Freedom Signal

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January 7, 2022

Life After the Life Blog Series, Part 2


I want you to ask yourself: Do I feel guilty saying ‘No’ to something I don’t want to do? Do I have trouble making eye-contact during a conversation? Can I ask for help when I need it and expect not to have to give anything in return? When I travel, do I lock my hotel door? 

These are just a few of the things that I needed to relearn once I was out of the life. In the life, choices were made for me and the freedom to speak about what I needed wasn’t an option. So, knowing that it was okay to say ‘No’ to something that I didn’t want to do, seemed like a foreign concept and a right that I never had. 

For example, I work in a hospital and I would always get asked to stay pasted my assigned hours or come in on my day off. I always said ‘Yes,’ to the point where I was exhausted. I was saying ‘Yes’ because it had been ingrained in me that saying ‘No’ would get me hurt. Now, each day, I must remind myself  that I am no longer in danger and must ask, “Is this something I really want to do?” This is something I still struggle with, but that more successful times I have, the easier it becomes.

While in the life, avoiding eye-contact was a must, but in the real world you are expected to make direct eye-contact when having conversations to show that you are engaged. This was something that I was not at all use to but needed to learn rather quickly. Think about it. Try having a conversation with a person not making eye-contact with you. It is rather awkward, isn’t it? It’s a very simple but important skill to have, and one that I needed to retrain my brain to know that making eye-contact was no longer a threat to my safety.

 To this day asking for help is never easy. Fresh out of the life, when help was being offered and I was not expected to do anything in return, this was something that was extremely hard for me to grasp. I had believed that nothing was given without an expectation. But through the love and support of Reset180, I quickly learned that that simply wasn’t true. 

And my final question: Do you lock your hotel door? Seems like a rather silly question, right? You want to keep people from coming into your room, but I never wanted to be stuck fumbling trying to get the door unlocked if I needed to escape quickly. I would rather someone walk in the door, than not be able to get out if need be. 

These are the things that still go through my mind as I try to navigate everyday life. I see the world in a different way because of my experiences. It is frustrating at times and can be a bit discouraging, but knowing where I am today compared to where I was, I will continue to do everything I need to do to never be in that place again. Even four years later, I still have a lot of bad days, a lot of days I question my worth, but the good days, the days I feel strong and the days I feel like a true survivor, are starting to outweigh the others. 

In my next blog, I will be talking about the aftermath of trafficking that you don’t seem to hear too much about, the symptoms I deal with day-to-day, and what my recovery progression has been like. 

Thank you so much for reading! You are an amazing person, keep being you. 



*Survivor name and photos may be changed for their protection.

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January 7, 2022

Life After the Life Blog Series, Part 1


If you are reading this, you clearly are passionate about something much bigger than yourself. Something that needs to be talked about.  Something that needs to be stopped. 

My name is Josie and I am a survivor of human trafficking. I was both familial and pimp controlled; familial meaning trafficked by a family member and pimp controlled meaning trafficked by a pimp through force in exchange for money. I am a young adult dealing with life after being trafficked and all the struggles that come with being a survivor. 

I have been free for four years and am grateful every day for this freedom, but getting to that point was a lot harder than one might think. Many assume that once you break free of the life, the hard part is over. But in reality, the hard part has only just begun. 

In this blog series, I will talk about what it is like to be a survivor of human trafficking, relearning how the world is supposed to be, the symptoms I still deal with, and much more. I encourage you to follow along so you can better understand what survivors go through. I also want to point out that every survivors journey is different. This one is mine.

In my next blog, I will discuss what it was like relearning the way life is supposed to be, allowing people to help, setting healthy boundaries, and realizing that there were people out there who truly cared about me.  

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about this horrific issue, and joining me as I share my story. 



*Survivor name and photos may be changed for their protection.

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May 28, 2021

Mental Health Awareness: Knowing the Signs & Supporting

Those in Need

Kate Reilly

Though May and Mental Health Awareness month are coming to a close, the team at Reset180 encourages you to continue to learn about the signs of those struggling with mental health, how you can help others, and ways to support yourself. Mental health awareness is a subject that everyone should continue to learn about and address. 


Look for the Signs

An important part of helping someone address and seek the proper care for mental health issues lies in first identifying that they need support. Consider the following list of signs that might alert you to someone in need: 

  • Excessive fear and anxiety.
  • Changes in eating habits.
  • Avoiding people/places that they love.
  • Overuse of substances like alcohol or drugs.
  • Inability to carry out everyday tasks.
  • Lack of energy or ability to ‘tackle the day.’
  • Difficulty understanding or relating to others.
  • Confusion, acting distracted, or unable to focus.
  • Extreme/sudden mood changes.

If you believe someone is suffering and in need, there are ways you can make a difference! 

  • Remind them that you are there for them and that they are not alone in facing whatever emotions or hardships they may be experiencing.
  • Set aside some time and find a quiet place to practice active listening. Invite them to share what they are going through, offering your ears and presence as a way of showing them they are being heard.
  • Offer to assist them in seeking a trauma-informed professional counselor and to be there for them on the journey. Professional assistance can often help to identify and correctly diagnose a mental health issue, which is the first step in establishing a treatment plan. Psychologytoday.com is a good place to start in seeking professional guidance. 
  • If they have a relationship with God, encourage them to surrender their anxiety, fear, depression, and pain to Jesus. He has the power to heal, restore, and love us through all of life’s hardships. Commit to praying for them every day during your daily time with Jesus.
  • Remind them to always move forward towards the solution instead of focusing time and energy on the problem. Often resetting our mindset in this way will help bring hope and show them the ‘light at the end of the tunnel’.


At Reset180, we accompany human trafficking survivors on their journey to restoration both physically and mentally. Mental health awareness month may be coming to a close, but we encourage you to continue to be aware of the issues individuals may be facing and offer your support and comfort when possible. 


How Reset180 Works with Survivors to Overcome Mental Health Issues and support them in achieving their Dreams:

As an organization that works with survivors of human sex trafficking, we encounter mental health struggles and trauma each day that we strive to address, understand, and support our survivors through. These issues can range from depression to anxiety to PTSD. Trauma is individualized and impacts each person differently, so each survivor requires a custom plan for services and support. Trauma has long-lasting effects and it impacts an individual’s worldview and how they access services and form relationships. Their understanding of the world is that nothing is given for free and nobody can truly be trusted because that is what the world has taught them. To overcome these traumas, Reset180 works with each survivor, developing services that build resilience and fostering empowerment and trust to create successful trauma-informed care so that survivors can one day feel safe enough to rejoin society.


Our case management team meets up to four times a month with each Reset180 survivor. During these meetings, our professionals work through self-doubt and fear to make a list of goals with the survivor. These goals can be simple or complex, but most importantly, they are achievable. Together, a case manager and survivor will map out the exact steps needed to achieve the goal they have written down. This process allows the survivor to realize the realisticness of their goal, track monthly achievements, and see the clear path to their success. 


Because of gracious and compassionate donors, Reset180 is often able to cover the financial and basic needs of our survivors as they work towards their goals. It is one of the small blessings Reset180 feels grateful to be able to provide. 


Consider making a donation to help support the mental health work Reset180 does, and the time and energy our staff and volunteers give to survivors on their healing journey. A donation as small as $30 a month can make a big difference in the lives of the individuals we serve. 


In addition, we encourage you to sign up for our monthly newsletter to stay up to date on our events, news, and gain access to our resources. 


*If you, or someone you know, is suffering from suicidal thoughts, seek assistance immediately: 

  • Dial 911
  • Call the Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
  • Visit your nearest hospital 

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February 4, 2021

Join Us This Winter in Fighting For Freedom!

Kate Reilly

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. The goal this month is to bring modern-day slavery that occurs quietly in our cities and towns to light. But what is modern-day slavery? Modern-day slavery is any form of forced human exploitation for labor or service. There are two main types: Human Trafficking and Labor Trafficking. 

What is sex trafficking? Human trafficking is commercial sex acts induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person performing the act is under the age of 18. (For victims over 18,force, fraud, or coercion must be proven.) 

What is Labor Trafficking? Labor trafficking is the use of force, fraud, or coercion to recruit, harbor, transport, or employ a person for labor services in domestic servitude, debt bondage, or slavery. Within this sort of trafficking, age is not important and adults and children are usually treated similarly.

Did you know that there are 25 different specified kinds of human trafficking? They are: Escort Services; Illicit Massage; Health & Beauty Services; Outdoor Solicitation; Residential Sex Trafficking; Domestic Work; Bars, Strip Clubs, & Cantinas; Pornography; Traveling Sales Crews; Restaurants & Food Service; Peddling & Begging; Agriculture & Animal Husbandry; Personal Sexual Servitude; Construction; Hotels & Hospitality; Landscaping; Illicit Activities; Arts & Entertainment; Commercial Cleaning Services; Factories & Manufacturing; Remote Interactive Sexual Acts; Carnivals; Forestry & Logging; Health Care; Recreational Facilities.

That’s quite a lot of different types, and the varying amounts might surprise you. In short, human trafficking exists across many different categories in our day-to-day lives, and it more than likely exists within your immediate community. 

During 2021, consider becoming involved in our fight against local and national human trafficking! You can make an impact by doing one or all of the following to help us raise awareness and show your support: 


    1. Donate to Reset180. Your financial gifts help us Prevent and Disrupt local slavery, and Restore survivors. Learn more about our mission here
    2. Become a Reset180 Abolitionist! When you join, you will receive a toolkit, be a part of special events, and join a private Facebook group that serves to help educate and equip our Abolitionists in this fight for freedom. 
    3. Post or repost on your social media. Part of raising awareness is spreading the message. Follow us on social media or sign up to receive our newsletter so you can become a part of the conversation. We share updates, stories, and ways to get involved weekly! 
    4. Write a letter to your congressman asking what steps they are taking to prevent and disrupt human trafficking. 
    5. Organize a night of prayer through your church or local group to raise awareness and pray for victims and justice for those who engage in human trafficking. 
    6. Create a virtual event or start a fundraiser with friends and families to educate them on the Red Flags of Human Trafficking. Don’t know the Red Flags to look out for? We list some big ones below. 
    7. Save the hotline on your phone and ask at least two friends to do the same. Pass it on so that everyone has the number they need if they encounter any Red Flags. You can find local hotlines listed here. Otherwise, use the following numbers to report a tip: National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888, or text to BeFree (233733). For emergencies call 911.

Victims of modern-day slavery are often easy to miss in everyday life, but there are some things you can look out for that might alert you to a sex or labor trafficking situation. We call these Red Flags, and you can learn some of them below: 

  • The person is isolated (physically and/or emotionally).
  • Withdrawn from friends & family.
  • They have few friends at school or in life. 
  • They have brands, tattoos or unexplained bruises/injuries.
  • They post sexually explicit photos on social media.
  • Use lingo like “daddy” or “papi” to refer to male friends.
  • They are acting fearful, anxious, nervous/paranoid, or depressed.
  • They behave in a way that is not common for their age:
    • lashing out, isolating, angry. 
  • They abuse drugs, alcohol, or other substances.
  • They are gone for hours/days at a time, often skipping school/work. 
  • The person is not allowed to go anywhere other than school or home.
  • Their place of living/working has unusual security measures.
  • Places of living/work where women go in but rarely leave. 
  • Females are escorted by males.
  • Multiple women arrive and leave their destination in the same vehicle. 


Raising Awareness WORKS! Consider the following story: 

There was a Human Trafficking Awareness event hosted at a local school. During this event, a speaker shared various Red Flags to look for that might indicate someone was a victim of human trafficking. As a student sat there listening to these Red Flags, she found that her sister matched many of them. It was at that moment that she realized her sister was a victim of human trafficking. 

The student became upset and went into the hall to process what she had just realized. A counselor intercepted her and when asked what was wrong, she found her voice. She shared that she believed, based on the presentation and Red Flags, that her sister was a victim of human trafficking. The right people were informed because of her awareness, and her sister was able to be helped. If her sister hadn’t been made aware of the signs, who knows what might have happened. Knowing the signs is the first step in becoming a Defender of Freedom against local human trafficking hiding in plain sight. 

Here are five questions you can ask yourself to help identify a victim of human trafficking: 

  1. Are they in the company of someone older, or do they only hang out with people older than them?
  2. Do they show signs of physical or mental abuse? Do they have bruises, an unhealthy look, or seem disoriented, confused, and withdrawn?
  3. Do they seem to be lacking personal possessions, wearing the same clothes, or don’t appear to have a home they regularly go to? 
  4. Do they have randomly nice items on their person; expensive watches/jewelry, a nice cell phone, but otherwise appear to lack personal items?
  5. Are there unreasonable security systems where they live like security cameras, locks on all doors, or a locked fence around the property? 


Making an impact in your community starts with YOU! Make it your 2021 mission to raise your voice and raise awareness. Hosting an event or have a story to share? We would love to hear from you. You can email us at info@reset180.com, message us on social media, or tag us in your efforts with the hashtag #Reset180. Let’s make it our goal to make a big impact in our fight against local human trafficking this new year! 

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June 9, 2020

Human Trafficking in Under Ten Minutes

Kate Reilly

When people hear the words, “human trafficking,” they perhaps think of faraway places beyond the borders of their own state, perhaps even beyond the borders of their own country. The term is used to reference a horrible reality that is distant from them. However, they couldn’t be more wrong. Human trafficking is a criminal industry that impacts and affects over 40 million victims globally, and 83% of human trafficking victims are US citizens, (Educate). The TIP report is put out by the State Dept annually. In the 2018 Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP), it states that the top three nations of origin for victims of Human Trafficking are the United States, Mexico, and the Philippines.

But what is human trafficking? The dictionary defines it as, “the action or practice of illegally transporting people from one country or area to another, typically for the purposes of forced labor or sexual exploitation,” (Dictionary.com, 2020). Most think of human trafficking as it is portrayed in the media and movies, such as “Taken.” However, what this definition disallows is an understanding of actions against victims that are both big and small, and still considered human trafficking.

One of the greatest ways to help fight back against human trafficking in the Virginia area and nationwide is to educate yourself and others. Below are five resources to help you join the fight against human trafficking.

  1. Visit our Facebook page to watch our quick one minute video to better understand why human trafficking happens and peer into the emotional vulnerability of the victims: Click here.

  2. Home Land Security works tirelessly to hunt down predators and trafficking rings through investigations and tips from people just like you. Visit their website to educate yourself on key indicators to look for when trying to identify a victim and possibly save a life. They also have this list on a printable or orderable card so that you can carry it with you at all times: Click here.

  3. The concept of human trafficking is, unfortunately, surrounded by myths and misconceptions that prevent the public from realizing that this crime goes on around and near them. One of the best steps to contributing and fighting against this crime is to recognize and help spread the word on common myths. Myths such as human trafficking only happens outside the U.S. or that human trafficking only victimizes the poor and foreign nationalities. Learn more here about common misconceptions: Click here.

  4. Learn the numbers around you and inform others, too; human trafficking happens closer to home then you think. You can view your state’s statistics: Click here.

  5. The best tool you can equip yourself with is to know the steps to take in reporting a possible victim. Remember as many details about the situation as possible, noting the victim, details about the person you believe is the trafficker, license plate numbers, car type, and the location where the event was witnessed. Call the National Human Trafficking Hotline toll-free at 1-888-373-7888 and share your collected details. You can also text the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 233733, or visit the National Human Trafficking Hotline online chat via, www.humantraffickinghotline.org/chat, (Mellissa Withers, 2019).

If you wish to continue to educate yourself, here are six documentaries you can watch, (Elena Baxter, 2019).

  1. I Am Jane Doe

  2. In Plain Sight

  3. Nefarious: Merchant of Souls

  4. Sex + Money: A National Search for Human Worth

  5. The Abolitionists

  6. Blind Eyes Opened

Follow us on social media to stay up to date on the most current events and show your support:

Interested in helping to educate your community? Visit our website to learn more about requesting a speaker or speaking events taking place near you. Learn more here.

Reference List:

Educate. Retrieved from http://fiercefreedom.org/educate/

Dictionary.com (2020). Human Trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.dictionary.com/browse/human-trafficking?s=t

Mellissa Wither. (2019). Be the Change: How you can end human trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.publicservicedegrees.org/be-the-change/stop-human-trafficking/

Elena Baxter. (2019 ). 5 Documentaries to Watch to Educate Yourself About Human Trafficking. Retrieved from https://www.freedomplaceproject.com/single-post/2018/09/25/5-Documentaries-to-Watch-to-Educate-Yourself-About-Human-Trafficking

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August 10, 2020

Keep your Children Safe from Online Predators During COVID-19

Kate Reilly

The COVID-19 crisis has impacted the way children learn and parents parent. Schools and daycare centers have kept their doors closed in hopes of stopping the spread of the virus, and places of work shifted gears to fully remote to keep their industries up and running. As the tough times extend through the summer months and children have even more free time on their hands, it is more important than ever to continue to closely monitor children’s time online.


These changes, while positive in response to the virus, make for a difficult situation in the home. The inability to schedule playdates, utilize daycare centers, or hire summer nanny’s leaves much of the daily stresses of keeping children entertained on the working-from-home parents. This shift in children’s social life has pulled them from in-person activities and friendships to online ones, with a significant increase of time spent on handheld devices and the internet. While this shift can have positive benefits-still interacting with friends while socially distancing and doing e-learning through their schools- more internet time comes with more risk.

The Risk of Your Child Encountering an Online Predator is Increasing 

Children are spending more time online due to COVID-19 and parents are finding themselves overburdened by the mounting expectation of keeping up with their jobs while also keeping up with the continuous daily needs and education of their children. In addition, the threat of online predators has increased due to the shelter in place directional. “In just the first four weeks of lockdown, the number of suspected child abuse cases in the U.S. more than doubled to over two million,” according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, (Margolis, 2020). Predators are taking advantage of the increased time online and lack of direct supervision. This combined with the emotional anxiety and inclining sadness in younger children due to the virus is creating, according to Andy Burros, head of child safety online policy for the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, “the perfect storm,” (Margolis, 2020).

Steps to Take to Keep Children Safe

Conversations about online predators and the dangerous situations that can exist online should be had between parents and their children. Even if parents have already discussed these issues, now is a necessary time to review the rules and risks of online gaming, chat rooms, and social media. Remind children/teens that predators can access online gaming rooms and social media with ease. Agree that children report anything strange or uncomfortable to the parent, stressing that there is nothing to fear or any trouble that can result in their sharing. Ask them to demonstrate that they know how to report and block users and direct messages.

Below are some bullet points on what to cover with a child/teen:

  • How sexual predators present themselves; often using fake photos and names, lying about their age and location

  • Red lights that should result in them reporting the situation to a parent and then reporting/blocking the person:

    • Direct messages that ask for their name, age, address, what school they attend, or photos of them

    • Direct messaging them inappropriate photos

    • Asking the child to not share their ‘friendship’ with their parents/keeping them a secret

  • Remind the child to never share their address, the name of their school, or locational information on social media or gaming sites

  • Never sharing photos or allowing others to share photos that are of an inappropriate nature

  • Reporting any activity that makes the child feel uncomfortable, unsure, or upset

Come up with a plan that outlines daily screen time so that the child is never alone with a private screen, and don’t allow children/teens to go to bed with their devices. “Monitor your child’s devices by looking at their search history, reading their text messages, and monitoring what they’re posting,” (Margolis, 2020).


Luckily, parents don’t have to fight against online predators alone. Apps like Bark allow parents to monitor their child’s online activities, while apps like Net Nanny allow parents to block content, apps, and sites entirely on devices (Margolis, 2020).

Acronyms to Know and Be Aware of on Social Media and Chats/Texts

The Child Rescue Coalition pulled research and gathered a list of frequently used acronyms that are vital for parents to learn and know, (Culture Reframed, 2020). Researchers found that children are developing their own type of language to keep parents out of the loop – and that predators are learning and using them, too.

MIRL – Meet in real life

MOS – Mom over shoulder

NIFOC – Nude in front of computer

NSFW – Not safe for work

P911 – Parent alert

PAW – Parents are watching

PAL – Parents are listening

PIR – Parent in room

POS – Parent over shoulder

PRON – Porn

RUMORF – Are you male or female?

SWAK – Sealed with a kiss

TDTM – Talk dirty to me

WTTP – Want to trade pictures?

8 – Oral sex

99 – Parent gone

142 or 459 – I love you

182 – I hate you

1174 – Nude club

ASL – Age/sex/location

CD9 – Code 9 means parents are around

FYEO – For your eyes only

GNOC – Get naked on camera

GYPO – Get your pants off

HAK – Hugs and kisses

KFY – Kiss for you

KPC – Keeping parents clueless


Culture Reframed (2020, February 18). Learn the Acronyms & Abbreviations That Predators Use. Cultureframed.


Margolis, C. (2020, July 20). Pedophiles Are Sharing Grooming Manuals Online, And It’s Perfectly Legal. EvieMagazine.


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