In the clip below, Lisa Ling provides a message to viewers about taking action against underage sex trafficking.
What You Can Do
You might think that underage sex trafficking could never happen in this country, let alone your community – but you'd be wrong. Kevin Perkins, Director of the FBI’s Innocence Lost project, offers some guidance for how parents can fight back and what warning signs to watch for:
Step 1: Awareness
Acknowledge that this is a real problem that could be in your town. Parents need to be cognizant that these predators could be lurking at malls, movie theaters or other popular hang-out spots for young girls.
Step 2: Warning Signs
Keep an eye out for the following signs in your child.
- Mood changes
- Different clothing
- Things that could be gifts (i.e. a new cell phone or jewelry) – be sure to ask your child where these new items are coming from.
- New and older friends
- Unexplained bruises, injuries, tattoos or burns – if you notice any of these signs, contact law enforcement immediately.
To report a lost or missing child, contact the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children by calling 1-800-THE-LOST or visit www.missingkids.com.Click here for more on Lisa Ling's investigation from her new show, Our America with Lisa Ling, on the OWN Network.