NEWS . WINTER 2023
By Lisa Delamater . Social Services Agency
If You Knew More, Would You Do More?
January is Human Trafficking Awareness month. The Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force (OCHTTF) will host a community and youth awareness event on Wednesday, January 18, 2023, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at California State University, Fullerton’s Titan Student Union. Middle school-aged youth, their caregivers and interested community members are invited to attend to discuss the importance of being safe in our community. Attendees will learn how to identify the warning signs of sexual exploitation and how to avoid becoming a victim. The event will also include presentations from human trafficking experts and information booths.
Since 2004, OCHTTF has assisted approximately 1,224 victims. Composed of five core members consisting of law enforcement, victim advocates, the County of Orange Social Services Agency (SSA), OC Probation and the District Attorney’s Office, OCHTTF investigates human trafficking and exploitation, prosecutes these crimes and develops victim-centered interventions and resources for survivors.
Together, with the extended support of over 70 additional organizations, the OCHTTF has made incredible progress. OCHTTF is now expanding its efforts to include prevention education. SSA offers a new, online education experience called The Cool Aunt. The one-hour course is designed for youth ages 10 and older and their caregivers. It teaches participants to recognize frequently used exploitation and grooming techniques and provides support and information about what to do if participants think they are being groomed or have been exploited. If you are interested in learning more, please speak with your child’s assigned social worker who can send you a link to the Orange County-specific course at no cost.