Iowans encouraged to wear blue Wednesday to support human trafficking survivors

(ABC 6 News) – Wednesday is Human Trafficking Awareness Day and Iowa Sec. of State Paul Pate is encouraging Iowans to wear blue to support survivors of human trafficking.

The day is specifically dedicated to increase awareness and prevent human trafficking which is a crime that can occur behind closed doors, in plain sight, at a workplace, and in any community.

Human trafficking occurs when men, women, or children are forced to perform labor services or sexual acts and it happens across the world.

Secretary Pate’s office oversees Iowa’s Safe at Home program which provides address confidentiality for survivors of trafficking and other violent crimes. He also launched the Iowa Businesses Against Trafficking initiative in January 2022. It has grown to more than 620 members.

RELATED: Raising awareness about human trafficking across Iowa

“By wearing blue on Wednesday, January 11, we can show support for survivors of human trafficking and also hopefully open people’s eyes to a crime that might be happening in their community,” Secretary Pate said. “I challenge you to join us in raising awareness by wearing your blue shirt, tie, socks, or whatever you have on Wednesday.”

If you or someone you know is a victim of human trafficking, or suspect human trafficking, call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888.