SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards joined other state and national leaders in declaring January as Human Trafficking Prevention Month. First Lady Donna Edwards will honor those affected by participating in #WearBlueDay on Wednesday.
On Jan. 11, First Lady Edwards will join state leaders and professionals all over Louisiana to participate in #WearBlueDay. Additionally, the Governor’s Mansion, Ceasars Superdome, and the Four Seasons Hotel in New Orleans will be lit in blue to recognize Human Trafficking Prevention Month.
“I thank God every day for the opportunity to be in this role and to be able to use my platform to educate those around me about human trafficking and what we can all do to help survivors regain control of their lives,” First Lady Donna Edwards said. “We can never underestimate the power of being a voice for the many survivors across this state and country.”
Human trafficking is defined as using force, fraud, or coercion to compel a person into commercial sex acts or labor against his or her will.
People from all walks of life, gender, race, and ages can fall victim to human traffickers.
Human trafficking affects millions of victims globally and affects hundreds of victims in Louisiana, according to state data.
In 2021, agencies in Louisiana that aid human trafficking victims reported serving 932 individuals. Of those helped, 684 were new clients, and twice as many youth victims were served than adults.
Victims of human trafficking in Louisiana are 41% African American and 47% white. Victims that were aged 17 and under made up 45% of all reported victims in 2021.