September 4, 2013
Mayor Parker Calls on Houstonians to
Human trafficking is a crime that impacts children and adults around the world, in cities across the nation and in our very own communities here in Houston. We want to put a stop to human trafficking and we need your help. Houston Mayor Annise Parker is calling on all Houstonians to "Shine a Light on Human Trafficking," with an initiative to provide information about human trafficking and actions you can take to help solve the problem locally during September's observance of Human Trafficking Awareness Month. The campaign seeks to increase public awareness of the problem, provide citizens with easy to understand information on how to recognize the signs of human trafficking and encourage them to report suspicious situations to authorities.
Mayor Parker will kick off the campaign at City Hall on September 24, 6:30 p.m. till dusk. The evening will feature community gatherings at other locations, including the Houston Galleria and neighborhood centers throughout the city. HTV, the city's municipal channel, will present a live broadcast of the mayor's kickoff at City Hall, which will be viewed by event participants at the community sites.
Known as "modern day slavery," human trafficking is defined as the buying and selling of people for the purpose of forced, defrauded or coerced services, labor or sex. The crime includes the victimization of adults and children. Houston is considered a hub for human trafficking. In 2012, 9.2 percent of all calls to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline originated in Texas, comprising the second highest in the country. A majority of those calls originated in Houston.
"Shine a Light on Human Trafficking" is a long-term campaign that will utilize community engagement strategies recommended by the Mayor's Human Trafficking Task Force. It is an initiative of the Office of International Communities (OIC), a division of the Department of Neighborhoods (DON). For a schedule of events and to learn more about the campaign, visit www.shinealighthouston.org or email OIC at email@example.com. For information about OIC and DON, visit www.houstontx.gov/neighborhoods.
Do you see city signs on the road and elsewhere that no longer apply or are not necessary anymore? Call 3-1-1 or go to www.houston311.org to report these signs so we can take a look and determine if it's time for them to be removed or replaced with something more up-to-date and less confusing. Examples include street name signs or "No Parking without Permit" signs in places where permits are no longer needed.
In addition, the current campaign season is underway and illegal campaign signs need to be reported. Report violators by calling 3-1-1 or go to www.houston311.org. For questions on the proper placement of signs, call the Sign Administration Division at 832.394.8890.