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ABC Eyewitness News

ABC Eyewitness News

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Know More, Do Better January 18, 2023

Know More, Do Better January 18, 2023

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This is Higher Ground

This is Higher Ground

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SB 1042 Survivor Advocate Jenna McKaye talks about HT being a serious crime.

SB 1042 Survivor Advocate Jenna McKaye talks about HT being a serious crime.

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Congressional task force on human trafficking launches

March 22, 2022

OC Register

Congressional task force on human trafficking launches in Southern California

Rep. Young Kim gathers experts to discuss how to support and build on successful efforts already underway,

Educate students, starting in middle school, about how to avoid becoming victims of human trafficking. Change federal law so traffickers can't dodge a long prison sentence by claiming they didn't know their victim was a child.  Give money and shelter to teens aging out of foster care so they won't continue to be top targets for human trafficking.

Those ideas are just part of a wish list from a panel of 10 experts who gathered March 21 in Placentia for the inaugural meeting for the Human Trafficking Congressional Task Force.

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OC Human Trafficking Task Force Releases Annual Report

April 6, 2021

My News LA

Volunteers who aid human trafficking victims had to get creative with their assistance during the COVID-19 pandemic last year, according to an annual report released Tuesday.

For instance, a Salvation Army support group for victims of foreign countries is a “safe place” for them to “share their stories and feelings or quietly listen to others if they don’t feel ready to share,” according to the Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force report.

That support group is often the “only space” where they can express their feelings, the group said.


However, the pandemic and lockdown restrictions shut it down for a time. Volunteers figured out how to revive the group by providing “laptops with camera access so that participants could transition into attending the support group in a virtual setting,” according to the report.

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Better Understanding How Human Trafficking Works in OC 

January 8, 2021

Daily Pilot

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month and a crucial time to better understand human trafficking and learn to spot the signs of this heinous and pervasive crime that has benefitted from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Pre-pandemic, this business was generating roughly $150 billion per year for traffickers worldwide. Now, with millions of people seeking work, traffickers are preying on the desperate and the vulnerable to grow the crime. They recruit laborers through false advertisements of good-paying jobs and offer young people and children an escape from the tension and violence in homes falling apart due to unemployment, abuse or other trauma — then traffic them into the commercial sex industry.

Make no mistake, human trafficking occurs in Orange County. As service providers, victim advocates and educators who work in partnership with law enforcement agencies and on behalf of the Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force, we know firsthand the horrors of human trafficking. 

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Human Trafficking Panel Interview

January 17, 2020

KSBR Radio

Dawn Kamber Jazz 88.5 FM KSBR News Director is bringing attention to Human Trafficking Awareness Month in her public affairs program. Listen in as she interviews a panel from the Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force featuring Lita Director, Director of Victim Assistance Programs with Waymakers, Michelle Heater, Program Director with Waymakers, Chief Jorge Cisneros with the Anaheim Police Department, and Deputy Chief Ken Gominsky with the Santa Ana Police Department.

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How to Talk to Kids About Trafficking

January 7, 2020

Parenting OC Magazine


Q: [All Ages] I want to bring up the topic of human trafficking with my kids, but I don't know how to go about it. Can you offer some advice?


A: It may seem like an unusual topic to bring up with a child, but human trafficking is a subject matter that is begging for increased awareness - even among youth. The topic can be frightening, there is no way around it. It may also be uncomfortable for parents to discuss. But with expanding technology, tracking devices and social media now in the hands of our youth, the potential risks and vulnerability to human trafficking are higher than ever before.

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Worth his weight in gold. Human trafficking support dog with arthritis needs help with therapy to continue his work.

June 20, 2019

Fox 29 Philadelphia


A California county’s first and only volunteer service dog who supports human trafficking survivors is now in need of physical therapy due to arthritis from his strenuous work helping traumatized victims.


Baxter, a 10-year-old German Shepherd, is a certified support animal for the Anaheim Police Department. Every week, the rescue dog volunteers at the courthouse in Orange County, California, supporting human trafficking survivors.


“The survivors are tense and don’t want to talk to people usually, but when Bax comes — they just have an immediate bond,” said Cheryl Timmons, who is Baxter’s owner and dog mom. “The survivors just cry and break down, hug Bax and tell him their stories.”

Each week, Baxter helps about three to eight human trafficking survivors, with their ages ranging from around 13 to 18 years old, Timmons said. Some have even cried so much that their tears soaked Baxter’s coat, but he just stands or sits still to let them love him, she said.




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