KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — January is known as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, but on Jan. 11, it’s a day to create awareness and prevention of the illegal practice. 

It may be hard to realize that it’s going on around you, but the Community Coalition Against Human Trafficking (CCAHT) says that are some sign that may point to it happening right before your eyes. For example, if you notice someone has been in the same clothing, doesn’t have access to their belongings or can’t make eye contact with law enforcement, these observations could point to human trafficking.

CCAHT states that human trafficking is not just an international incident, like the movie ‘Taken.’ It is happening right here. It is a crime that is occurring in every zip code all over our state. Which is where CCAHT wants to be able to step in and help.

“We choose to love first. Without judgement. Without qualification. Without reciprocation. Sometimes it’s tough love, but it is always unconditional,” Tara Davis, the community relationship coordinator for CCAHT said. “The work that we do is driven by the survivors’ experiences and is centered on who they are and what they need as individuals,” she said.

CCAHT believes that level of care takes time and sometimes creativity, which is why the organization said the community can play a large to counter trafficking in our neighborhoods and to support those who have been exploited.

For more on CCAHT visit their website here.