Montgomery County Takes a Stand Against Human Trafficking: New Education and Awareness Campaign Unveiled

Per Montgomery County: To combat the harrowing issue of human trafficking, the Montgomery County Human Trafficking Prevention Committee is introducing its inaugural education and awareness campaign. Montgomery County residents will soon encounter powerful anti-human trafficking messages displayed on buses, bus stops and various social media platforms. The ads will be placed on 12 buses in English and Spanish and be displayed at five bus transit shelters. The campaign will run through October.

The campaign is a collaboration of the County’s Human Trafficking Prevention Committee and the County Department of Health and Human Services.

“This campaign is not merely an initiative; it is a necessity to illuminate the issue of human trafficking, said County Executive Marc Elrich. “According to the U.S. Department of State, there are an estimated 27.6 million victims worldwide. It is crucial we take steps to educate all people on this topic as anyone can fall victim.”

The campaign is fueled by statistics from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that show:

  • The number of individuals prosecuted for human trafficking surged from 729 in 2011 to 1,343 in 2020, marking an 84 percent increase.
  • Convictions for Federal human trafficking offenses rose from 464 persons in 2011 to 837 persons in 2019. There were 658 persons convicted in 2020.

“This campaign is critical to raising awareness about human trafficking in the County,” said Wendy Stickle, chair of the Human Trafficking Prevention Committee. “Many people in the County do not know what human trafficking is, let alone that it exists in the County.”

In 2022, Montgomery County investigated 11 cases of sex trafficking and four individuals were charged with trafficking. Sex trafficking is an insidious crime that can victimize anyone regardless of age, gender, socioeconomic status or background.

“Trafficking in Montgomery County occurs in various places, including hotels, private homes and illegal spa and massage establishments,” said Montgomery County Police Chief Marcus Jones. “Our vice unit works extremely closely with our special victims unit to ensure that not only are victims assisted, but that traffickers are arrested and held accountable.”

The Human Trafficking Prevention Committee began as a task force in 2014 and transitioned to a committee in 2017. The idea was based on a formal recommendation by the Montgomery County Commission for Women, which supports the committee.

The group consist of diverse members, including individuals, nonprofit service providers, advocacy groups and representatives from County agencies. The goal of the committee is to increase understanding of the issue in Montgomery County and to develop inter-agency coordination of strategies for responses and prevention.

To report sex trafficking crimes, call the National Human Trafficking Hotline toll-free at 1-888- 373-7888.

Community groups that would like more information about trafficking can email [email protected] to schedule a training or to learn more.

Recent Stories

Arthur M. Blank, Atlanta Falcons owner and chairman, today announced the addition of four new limited partners to the organization’s ownership group following approval from the NFL’s full ownership at…

Per Montgomery County: “The Montgomery County Commission for Women and Montgomery County Public Libraries will offer the last in their series of free financial seminars on the ins and outs…

Per Montgomery County: “The Montgomery County Council meets on Thursday, May 23 at 9:30 a.m. to take final votes on the County’s $7.1 billion FY25 Operating Budget and the $5.84 billion…

Montgomery Parks is offering up an assortment of events this June in celebration of Juneteenth and Josiah Henson’s birthday. Plus, the Summer Twilight Concert Series and Foodie Fridays return. Montgomery…

Washington City Paper is hosting its annual Best of D.C. contest -- and Well-Paid Maids is eyeing the Best Maid Service category. If you missed it: Well-Paid Maids has secured first place for the past three years. Can you help us snag gold again? Simply go to the ballot and write in your vote for the best maid service. In case you need a refresher before you vote, Well-Paid Maids is the only certified living-wage cleaning company in the D.C. area. We pay our cleaners, who are W-2 employees, at least $24 an hour and offer benefits like insurance, 24 paid days off per year and more. Voting is open until June 10 at 5 p.m., and the winner will be announced July 18. (We'll keep you posted!) Thank you for your support -- and if you still haven't booked a spring cleaning yet, now is the time!

Submit your own Announcement here.

Oak Chapel is excited that Priority Partners Managed Care Organization (PPMCO) in partnership with Johns Hopkins HealthCare (JHHC) have selected the Oak Chapel Hub as the location for the first mini-food pantry/mini library in Montgomery County. Please join us for the cupboard unveiling on Saturday, May 18th, at 10 AM (rain or shine). This is scheduled to be an outdoor event. If there is inclement weather, the event will be held in the multi-purpose room of the main church building (Hub distribution location). The cupboard will be fully stocked and ready for the community to take what they need and leave what they can. It is a privilege to be able to continue to serve the 20906 community.

Fighting food insecurity, feeding families.

Submit your own Announcement here.

Free Community Father-Daughter Dance

Fathers and father figures, create unforgettable memories with your daughter at our free community father-daughter dance on June 1st, from 6-8 pm. Hosted outdoors at Olney Baptist Church. This event offers a delightful outdoor experience complete with a DJ spinning tunes, interactive games, a charming photo booth, delicious treats, and exciting raffle prizes. Fathers/father figures and daughters of all ages are warmly welcomed to share in this special evening together. Join us for an evening of joy, laughter, and cherished moments!

In the spirit of giving back to our community, we are partnering with Quest to Feed Montgomery to make a meaningful difference in the lives of those in need. We kindly ask each attendee to bring along a non-perishable food item to donate during the event. Every contribution, no matter how small, will go a long way in supporting families facing food insecurity in our area.


Subscribe to our mailing list