The Scott County Sheriff’s Department held a seminar on the dangers of human trafficking Thursday night in Sikeston.
Shawn Wood is a victim’s advocate with the sheriff’s department and said human trafficking for sex is an issue everywhere including here in the Heartland.
“We’ve been trying to get the word out to local schools, churches, civic organization,” she said. “I think that’s key in curbing this heinous crime.”
Organized through Share Hope International, an organization that aims to prevent conditions that foster sex trafficking, Thursday’s program included a short film, presentation, and Q&A session.
About 40 people turned out for the event, a first of it’s kind.
Anchor Church elder and chaplain with the Scott County Sheriff’s Department, Jason Davis, said stopping human trafficking takes an effort from everyone involved.
“It takes law enforcement but it also takes your everyday customer at a restaurant or a person on the street to notice the signs that something just doesn't seem right," Davis said.
Leaders say it’s starts with educating children.
"It has to come everywhere, it has to come from school, it has to come from your parents, it has to come from church, it has to come from your friends,” Wood said.