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Human Trafficking Awareness Raised Through Red Sand Project, Carroll County Health Department

Courtesy Carroll County Health Department
Posted 8/11/20

HUNTINGDON — The Carroll County Health Department partnered with Coordinated School Health and other stakeholders within the community to shed light on human trafficking during the week of July …

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Human Trafficking Awareness Raised Through Red Sand Project, Carroll County Health Department

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HUNTINGDON — The Carroll County Health Department partnered with Coordinated School Health and other stakeholders within the community to shed light on human trafficking during the week of July 27-August 2, 2020.

Human trafficking, also known as modern day slavery, is quickly becoming a major public health concern. Today, an estimated 40.3 million people are being trafficked worldwide, including 180 cases reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline in Tennessee last year.

“Tennessee has been recognized for our progressive efforts for reducing human trafficking, and our mission to continue to work on this crisis until there are no more victims,” said Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP. “Human trafficking has to stop, and we are dedicated to providing resources and education to our communities.”

The Red Sand Project is a participatory art installment designed to shed light on human trafficking. Due to COVID-19, participants in events in their neighborhoods, office groups and respective spaces around the state practiced social distancing and other precautions while pouring red sand in the cracks of sidewalks in areas with high foot traffic, to symbolize human trafficking victims that “fall between the cracks.”

Although there was not a large gathering this year due to COVID-19, there were many red sand pours across Carroll County during the week of July 27 through August 2 to help increase the awareness for this important cause. Pictures were posted on social media using the hashtags #RedSandTN and #ItHasToStop.

Representatives throughout Carroll County participated this year, including students and McKenzie and Huntingdon Police officers. CCHD thanks Northwest TN Economic Development Center, Clarksburg Supermarket, Trezevant City Hall, McKenzie City Hall, Huntingdon Police Department and West Carroll and Hollow Rock-Bruceton schools for allowing the red sand to be poured on their property.

“Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, human trafficking continues to be a concern. The Tennessee Department of Health will continue to work with our partners to educate Tennesseans on ways to identify human trafficking victims and support those who have been trafficked,” said TDH Family Health and Wellness Division Deputy Medical Director Denise Werner, MD.

Carroll County Health Department is one of more than 90 organizations that partnered with the Tennessee Department of Health on this effort this year, each hosting events in their communities. The Tennessee Department of Tourist Development also participated, with each of the 16 Tennessee Welcome Centers featuring information on the project and how to get involved in spreading awareness.

If you know someone who needs help to escape trafficking, contact the Tennessee Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-855-558-6484 or text “BeFree” to 233722.

If you suspect you have come into contact with a victim of human trafficking, you may call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-855-558-6484. Hotline staff members will identify resources in your community. For more information on human trafficking and the hotline, visit https://humantraffickinghotline.org/.

Learn more about the Red Sand Project at https://redsandproject.org/.

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