Governor Abbott Proclaims January 2016 to be Human Trafficking Prevention Month
As Americans, we enjoy an extraordinary amount of freedom, and our opportunities for success are abundant. Unfortunately, even amidst a nation such as ours, there are individuals whose freedom, liberty and dignity have been stripped from them without their consent. Victims of human trafficking are compelled to do labor and many are forced into the sex industry.
The thought of this injustice, especially the coercion of children, is difficult to comprehend and demands an immediate and powerful response. As Texans, we will not stand for such inhumane practices, and the State of Texas will deal harshly with those responsible for trafficking.
Texas is a national leader in the fight to end human trafficking, and in 2003, was one of the first states to pass anti-trafficking laws. Most recently, I was proud to sign House Bill 10, passed during the 84th Legislative Session, establishing a Child Sex Trafficking Prevention Unit within my office’s Criminal Justice Division and providing increased penalties for human traffickers. However, there is still much work to be done, and I commend our state’s law enforcement officers for their dedication to stopping this atrocious crime.
At this time, I encourage all Texans to learn more about the dangers and signs of human trafficking and to do their part in supporting efforts to end trafficking at home and abroad. With a more informed public, Texas and our nation will be even better equipped to help those in need.
Therefore, I, Greg Abbott, Governor of Texas, do hereby proclaim January 2016, to be Human Trafficking Prevention Month in Texas, and urge the appropriate recognition whereof. In official recognition whereof, I hereby affix my signature this the 8th day of January, 2016.
View a PDF of the Proclamation here