The billboard to the right is a recruitment billboard addressed to young people to enter the commercial sex industry. While it is legal to be a stripper if you are 18 or older, stripping is often the "gateway" to becoming a victim of human trafficking. Young people are being bombarded with messaging that normalizes the commercial sex industry with some teen publications claiming that prostitution is "empowering work." The pimps/human sex traffickers are online daily trolling the internet trying to find victims by making prostitution look glamorous. Popular music makes prostitution look cool. So how do we compete? We (meaning all of us) actively need to launch our own social media/billboard campaign. This page is an invitation for every task force, church, service club, etc. to take this on.
Groups like the EPIC Project placed ads in Backpage. When buyers called in, they got a Christian man. After talking to over 100,000 buyers, what the EPIC Project found is that a surprisingly few understood that the prostituted person could be a victim of human trafficking. Some were indifferent. Many were troubled, especially men who had daughters. For the most part, if a buyer of sex has heard of human sex trafficking they assumed that if the man/boy/woman/girl they were with was truly a victim, they would walk in and start crying, begging to be rescued. So we need to raise awareness as to the fact that the majority of prostituted persons are victims of human trafficking and they can't tell the buyer that. Below is a poster with messaging that one could use to create a billboard that addresses this. Buyers fear arrest and they especially fear being found out by their coworkers, family, wife, friends etc. so the bill boards above do work to deter buyers of sex. However that deterrence is short term. Knowing they are causing harm is a long term solution that has had many buyers stop buying sex. and brought more people to the fight against human trafficking.
Billboard campaigns are fairly inexpensive and they reach hundreds of thousands or millions of people. In Los Angeles which is a fairly expensive market, an 11 ft by 6 ft billboard on an urban street that reaches almost 200,000 cars in a month, cost as little as $300 with a minimum order of $3,000. Freeway signs that reach millions cost @$10,000. Below are examples of posters that in addition to the ones above, you could create a billboard out of with similar messaging. Please do send us social media and posters that you have created and we will post it either here or on our Facebook page. While it is doubtful that sex buyers will "google" human trafficking, one can't avoid reading a billboard or a social media post. If you would like to start your own billboard movement, you are welcome to edit our brochure and and put your name and billboard pricing for your area. For billboards regarding arrest, law enforcement needs to put those up, but you can partner with them and help them raise money.
If people think that a problem is small, they are comfortable thinking "the police will handle it." When society faces a large problem, it becomes clear that "everyone needs to enter the ring" or the problem will continue to grow. These two posters from the Gallery inspires people to find out what they can do. Here is the one for "Second Largest and Fastest Growing." Here is the one that states the "Human Trafficking Will Surpass Drugs in Size by 2023"
When buyers of sex understand that the majority of boys and women they are buying are victims, many stop buying sex. According to Dr. Melissa Farley 84% of prostituted persons are under 3rd party control, meaning a pimp or human trafficker. You can find that poster here.. Porn viewing creates fantasies that sex buyers believe only a prostitute can fulfill. For that reason we need to raise awareness as to how destructive porn is. You can find that poster here.
When the public sees signs that state something to the effect of "Human Trafficking Happens Here," the common response was…. “you mean like a foreign born dishwasher who is forced to work 24/7 or foreign-born massage workers, etc. Once people understood that this wasn't just a "foreign problem," they became motivated to act, especially if they think their children could be affected, which is the purpose of the poster to the left which can be downloaded here. .
The problem with many posters that encourage victims to get help is that victims often don't know they are victims until they get out of "the life." They consider themselves to be a girlfriend to a boyfriend, so this poster speaks to that. It also give teen recruiters a warning that consequences are serious for recruiting. You can download the poster here.
While many states are now making Human Trafficking education mandatory once in middle school and twice in High School, we need more entities like churches to provide education. This poster wakes people up the problem and you can find it here.
There is a lot of money behind a growing movement to legalize prostitution or decriminalize it. In countries where prostitution was legalized or decriminalized, human trafficking grew because it allows the victims to hide in plain sight which is what the human traffickers want so they can operate freely. There is more information on this in the blog "Does Legalizing Prostitution Reduce Human Trafficking?" You can download the poster here.
This site has great trainings and downloadable flyers like the one to the left. Just go to this link to find posters in 22 different languages. If the link doesn't work, just go to their site and go to the "resource" tab and select "downloadable materials."
Homeland Security's Blue Campaign has some great posters. Just go to this link.
If it doesn't come up, then just to their site and go to the Resource tab and select downloadable materials.
Shared Hope has great resources. Here is the link to find videos, handouts, etc.
We use Pimping Tactics 101 as a handout when we do our teen presentations because it summarizes all the ways pimps/human traffickers trick their victims. Sowers Education focuses on raising awareness among teens. You can find their resources here. Here is their brochure in Spanish.
Fight the New Drug is a tremendous resource in educating teens about the consequences of viewing porn. You can find their resource page here.
If customers can’t find it, it doesn’t exist. Clearly list and describe the services you offer. Also, be sure to showcase a premium service.
This site by Abolutionist Mom has many great posters that can be put up at schools, boys and girls clubs, etc. Here is the link to find them.https://abolitionistmom.org/poster/s