The fight against human trafficking gets a boost Saturday, which the Morris County Chosen Board of Freeholders has named Human Trafficking Awareness Day in Morris County.
On Wednesday, the board issued a proclamation declaring the day and paying tribute to the work of the New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking, a nonprofit organizationy that works across the Garden State to end human trafficking through education, advocacy and assistance to survivors.
Human trafficking occurs when a person is recruited, harbored, obtained or exported through force, fraud or coercion for the purposes of sexual or labor exploitation, involuntary servitude and other types of mental and physical abuse.
“I believe most people would be shocked and horrified to learn of the extent to which this form of human slavery exists,” said Freeholder Director Tom Mastrangelo. “The freeholders join with the New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking and its many partners in promoting awareness and deterrence of this terrible crime."
At the freeholders' Wednesday work session in Morristown, the proclamation was presented to Pam Bennett-Santoro, acting chair of the Morris County Advisory Committee on Women, and Patricia Sly, executive director of Jersey Battered Women’s Service. Both organizations are partners in the coalition.
In conjunction with Human Trafficking Awareness Day, Morristown Medical Center on Saturday will host a free viewing of the film “Sex + Money: A National Search for Human Worth,” a documentary about domestic minor sex trafficking and the modern-day abolitionist movement that is fighting to stop it. The free viewing begins at 10 a.m. at the Medical Center, 100 Madison Ave., in Morristown.
A lot of the county's attention to the crime of human trafficking is in connection with the huge influx of people expected to come through the area due to the Super Bowl, which will take place at MetLife Stadium Feb. 2.