U.S. Attorneys Mike Hurst of the Southern District of Mississippi and Chad Lamar of the Northern District of Mississippi are conducting an Anti-Human Trafficking Training that their offices are sponsoring on the campus of the University of Southern Mississippi today to train law enforcement, governmental agencies, and non-profits on combatting this growing threat to our communities. The event is taking place in the Trent Lott Center.
“Human trafficking is a crime against humanity. This training seeks to educate stakeholders throughout the state to combat this modern-day form of slavery and oppression. Sadly, this is a growing problem throughout our state and our nation, and through this training, we are seeking to help people understand this scourge that is plaguing our communities, our citizens and our children. In the coming months, you will see more being done to address this issue as our offices prepare to launch a statewide human trafficking coordination council with our federal, state, and local partners. I want to thank USM President Rodney Bennett for hosting us today and for being a partner in this worthy effort,” said U.S. Attorney Hurst.
U.S. Attorney Chad Lamar, Northern District of Mississippi, also stressed the importance of this training and this issue in our communities. “The investigation and prosecution of human trafficking cases remains a priority for our office. Those engaged in these offenses prey on the victims, many of whom are young, vulnerable, and subjected to repeated abuse. Many of these victims lack the knowledge, education, and resources to escape their unfortunate situations. We must train our law enforcement agencies, social service providers and citizens to recognize the signs of human trafficking if we are to help prevent future occurrences and hold accountable those who choose to engage in such reprehensible conduct.” Lamar stated.
Presenters at the training event include Ashlee Lucas, the new Mississippi Human Trafficking Coordinator, the Mississippi Center for Violence Prevention, the Gulf Coast Center of Non-Violence, the Mississippi Department of Public Safety, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Mississippi Department of Child Protective Services, Children’s Advocacy Centers, the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office, and the U.S. Attorney’s Offices for the Northern and Southern District of Mississippi.