Valley educators could be on frontline of human trafficking battle

Local News

NILES, Ohio (WKBN) – Two members of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office visited Trumbull County Thursday to talk about human trafficking.

School counselors, principals and school resource officers across the county sat in Ohio’s Fight Against Human Trafficking.

Stacey Altiere, founder of the Ohio Response, Recovery and Intervention Network, said it’s crucial to educate people properly on human trafficking.

“Dialogue is lacking and it’s not accurate is the problem,” she said.

Jomel Aird from the Ohio Attorney General’s Office is also a leader in the state’s fight against human trafficking. She said they want educators to understand human trafficking and learn how to identify it and learn ways to respond to various forms of human trafficking.

“We are here to help bring that awareness and that education of the realities of human trafficking. There are so many myths that surround it right now and we want to be able to educate our educators,” Aird said.

Altiere said it makes sense that educators would be targeted for this information.

“To be able to arm the individuals in the schools with and those who sometimes spend more times with these children than their own families are able to is absolutely priceless,” Altiere said.

Members from all 22 school districts in Trumbull County were part of the program Thursday. Aird believes the educators can go back to their districts and plant seeds about human trafficking awareness.

“It just makes me feel so great that more Ohioans are empowered with the knowledge, and that means if more people are aware, the response can also be present. That means people are looking for the issue,” Aird said.

The Trumbull County Educational Service Center understands the importance of human trafficking awareness and believes educators need to receive the proper training.

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