Pledge to Be THAT Friend

We’ve all been there. A friend starts seeing someone who they think is “the one.” But something seems wrong to you - like they are being purposefully isolated from other friends and family, or you hear about gifts and promises that seem a little over-the-top. They ask what you think - but they don’t really want to know and they sure won’t appreciate it if you tell them. What do you do? First, you learn more about trafficking and exploitation. Then you be THAT friend, the one who tells the truth. 

Data from the National Human Trafficking Hotline tells us that the majority of people in sex trafficking situations were recruited by intimate partners or family members. 

On the other hand, data also shows that friends and family members play a significant role in helping victims and survivors connect to resources that can help them break free from exploitation and trafficking. In 2020, 40% of identified victims reached out for help because they learned about available resources from their family and friends. 

While your friend may not be ready to hear what you have to say right away, being THAT friend - the one who bravely approaches difficult conversations, listens with empathy and understanding, shares information they’ve learned about how love can be weaponized, and supports your friends when they are ready for help - could make all the difference. 

By understanding how trafficking really works, you can make a difference in the life of someone you love. I pledge to be THAT friend who: 

  1. Learns what grooming in sex trafficking situations looks like and shares what I've learned with my community.
  2. Reflects on past experiences to better understand how love may have been used to manipulate me or my loved ones and uses those lessons to deepen my sense of empathy.
  3. Has hard conversations with friends and loved ones who are in relationships that raise concerns.

After signing, you’ll receive an email with questions to help you reflect on your own experiences when love may have coerced you - or a friend - to do something you may otherwise not have. These can be used for your own self reflection, or to help facilitate conversations with someone you trust. You’ll also receive a social media graphic to share your pledge and encourage others to do the same.