More than 17,000 individuals are illegally trafficked into the U.S. each year, mostly women forced into the sex trade. But there are untold numbers of Michigan teens also being swept into this modern-day form of slavery, with the Internet providing a huge assist.
The National Human Trafficking Resource Center received 700 phone calls from Michigan in 2015, resulting in 152 cases against human traffickers. That was the year Laura Swanson graduated from MSU and began working on her film, Break the Chain, chronicling human trafficking in Michigan.
Thanks to Student Life and Leadership, you have two chances to see the film this month and one chance to talk about it with Swanson, the film’s producer and director. Either way, educating yourself about human trafficking is the best thing you can do to help stop it.
Tuesday, Jan. 24: Human Trafficking Awareness Event: Break the Chain film viewing, preceded by a discussion with its producer, Laura Swanson, noon to 2:30 p.m., Skylight Café, P-Building.
Wednesday, Jan. 25: Human Trafficking Awareness Event: Break the Chain film viewing, preceded by a speaker from The Alabaster Gift, a local organization dedicated to helping victims of human trafficking, 11 a.m.to 2 p.m., K301, South Campus.
Attendance at either event can earn you credit toward a cultural competency credit through Macomb Multicultural International Initiatives: http://www.macomb.edu/future-students/campus-life/MMII/cultural-competency-certificate.html.