Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has announced that the city will be stepping up its efforts against human trafficking and a cabinet-level position has been created to assist in the fight.
The typical victim in the state of Georgia is a 13 year-old girl who has seen more abuse in one day than many people see in a lifetime.
With Atlanta's popularity as a tourist destination, Mayor Bottoms says it's easier for predators and traffickers to blend in with the crowds at Hartsfield-Jackson Airport, the world's busiest. That's why state and federal officials are also working with the city, especially with so many children in danger.
Hartsfield Jackson International Airport was the first airport in the country to adopt the 'tourism child protection code of conduct action plan', designed to help passengers spot victims and let them know there's help.
"As we attract more and more visitors to the city and big events to the city, it's increasingly a problem but as a speaker said, "we're talking about children being bought and sold, prostituted and this is a modern form of slavery," said Mayor Bottoms. "So much of it is really about people being aware. If you see something, say something. If it doesn't feel right, it's all about awareness. Asking people, especially in the airport, and our employees in the airport to please call 911."
Ride-sharing company Uber says its one and a half million drivers across the country can also help in the fight. The company sent its drivers tips for spotting potential victims and is urging them to call police if they see any of the listed signs.
Mayor Bottoms says everyone needs to be involved and if you see something suspicious, call 911.
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