Human Trafficking Awareness Month


By the Governor of Alabama

WHEREAS, human trafficking is a very real problem facing the world today.  Although it can take many forms, including debt bondage, forced marriage, slavery and commercial sexual exploitation, in every case it goes against the core principles of individual freedom and civil rights for which our state and nation stand.  The State of Alabama is committed to ensuring that our communities remain on the front lines in combating this deplorable crime; and

WHEREAS, due to its secretive and illegal nature, it is difficult to accurately quantify the extent of human trafficking.  However, the U.S. Department of State estimates that from 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders each year. Most victims of human trafficking are women or children who have been marginalized and isolated from society.  The difficulty in grasping the full scope of this problem can be further compounded because people often turn a blind eye to it; and

WHEREAS, the first step in eliminating human trafficking is to educate others. We must work to ensure that all our residents are aware of this problem and how to spot it.  We must work together as a community so that human traffickers are punished and to protect and assist their victims.  Through the vigilance and perseverance of our citizens, effective enforcement of justice will someday be a reality; and

WHEREAS, we ask all residents of this state to join us in raising the visibility of this crime, whose victims are all too often invisible.  Together we can become more informed about this pressing issue and work to combat its injustices:

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Robert Bentley, Governor of Alabama, do hereby proclaim January 2017, as

Human Trafficking Awareness Month

in the State of Alabama.

Given Under My Hand and the Great Seal of the Office of the Governor at the State Capitol in the City of Montgomery on the 11th day of January 2017.

Robert Bentley