Fight for the ONE
The year of 2020 has been historical in countless ways and many of us were forced to pivot and adapt throughout the year. The fight against sex trafficking was no different.
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) reported a 106% increase in CyberTipline reports of suspected child sexual exploitation in March 2020 vs. March 2019 [source]. NCMEC also reported a 98.66% increase in Online Enticement Reports between January and September 2020 versus the same time period in 2019 [source]. While the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline saw a 43% increase in calls in May 2020 compared to May of 2019 [source].
Predators ramped up the recruitment of victims the moment schools closed. Children were given the stay- at-home order and suddenly online at a much higher volume allowing traffickers to recruit from the safety of their own living room couches. Alongside the recruitment of children, many young adults lost jobs and fell into a state of vulnerability created by a lack of income making them prime targets for traffickers as well.
Simultaneously, there was a drastic decline in law enforcement’s ability to interact with victims due to the pandemic and the events thereafter. Second only to friends and family, law enforcement is the most likely place for victims of sex trafficking to find help. This combination of events has only increased the complexities associated with combating domestic sex trafficking.
As this tumultuous year draws to a close it has reinforced that this fight is vitally essential and while it will not be won quickly, Guardian Group is committed to fighting with the long game in mind. Like everyone else we had to make a few changes throughout the year to stay within CDC guidelines. Without the ability to travel and provide in-person training we developed an online course exclusively for law enforcement. This course, along with our revamped hotel and community courses, have been a great avenue for providing training during the year despite the restrictions.
The PURSUIT™ team’s work has increased as they have been working closely with law enforcement to identify victims and support their operations throughout the country. Through the committed support of our Guardians we were able to grow our PURSUIT™ team. Our new analyst comes with 15+ years of experience in this field and will allow us to increase our offensive support of law enforcement across the nation.
We are fighting for the ONE today by developing funding strategies that will allow us to make an impact on the lives of many for years to come.With that in mind we invite you to join Guardian Group in one of two ways, make a one-time contribution and share with others why you fight for the ONE or become a Guardian, a monthly donor, and commit to making an impact on the lives of many.
Our goal is to increase our monthly giving program by 100 Guardians by the end of 2020. Will you join us in this effort?
Join us here.