Dear Homeland Security Today readers,
As Deputy Prosecuting Attorney of the 4th Judicial District of Arkansas and founder of the National Child Protection Task Force (NCPTF), I have been working for years on how jurisdictions and parents can all work together to protect children from exploitation.
Since we started the task force in 2018, we have helped countless agencies identify and apprehend sexual predators and recover children. Our biggest challenge comes from criminal networks that operate under the radar of most law enforcement. These networks traffic people and often assign people specific tasks such as being a driver. They profit from the misery of other people and will do anything to make money including the transportation of guns, drugs, and people. While this is nothing new as far as the big picture goes, thinking purely jurisdictionally is hampering operations because a lot can be missed that way.
That is why I said a fast and furious “YES” when Homeland Security Today reached out and asked me to lead their National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month awareness efforts.
When bigger issues, including children’s lives, are at risk, I believe that collaboration is key. Right now, too much of the data that is collected and all the lessons that are learned are kept isolated and closely guarded by each agency. Agencies also waste money by paying for the duplication of research or product development.
Will you collaborate with us to stop the trafficking of humans?
- Share your experiences, best practices, lessons learned, and great cases with us here at Homeland Security Today so that our community might learn, spread the word, and stop the trafficking of people.
- Wear blue on January 11th and hashtag #HSToday and the DHS Blue Campaign (or send us your photos!). We will retweet and give a big shoutout for everyone wearing blue and sharing their photos on social media and in our newsletters.
I encourage you to reach out and share your experiences with us. We are looking for professionals like you to share your thoughts about the evolving human trafficking landscape, the trends you see in your part of the country, the clandestine ways traffickers bring people into the country, activities your agency has employed to raise awareness, or that case that you broke wide open. We are looking for “lessons learned” from your experience – OR just your opinion about something going right, or wrong.
No marketing pieces will be accepted, but if you have an idea we are interested in hearing it. If you would prefer to be interviewed, we can make that happen as well.
Thank you for reading and considering a contribution to this important discussion.