Each year, thousands of people fall victim to human trafficking in the United States. That’s not including the thousands more that go unreported.

Human trafficking, also known as modern day slavery, happens everywhere… Even in Acadiana.

That’s why the St Landry-Evangeline Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force is raising awareness.

Laura Balthazar says a local human trafficking case is what pushed the creation of the SLEAT Task Force, “One of our young teenagers was a victim of human trafficking. She was brought to New Orleans where she was sold and then after they located her, they charged her with prostitution… So this is the real reason why a group of ladies here in St. Landry and Evangeline got together to offer the resources that are available that we didn’t even have any knowledge of when the first incident happened with this little girl.”

Earlier this month, Governor John Bel Edwards announced a multi-year $1.2million funding stream to implement “The Louisiana Child Trafficking Collaborative” to fight against human trafficking.

For more information on the Governor’s fight against human trafficking, watch this video from the Louisiana Human Trafficking Awareness Symposium: 

If you or someone you know is a vicitm of human trafficking, you can call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at:1 (888) 373-7888

You can also text “HELP” or “INFO” to SMS: 233733