Trucking industry tackles human trafficking with traveling exhibit

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo (KKCO/KJCT) -- There are nearly 3.5 million professional truck drivers in the United States, so oftentimes there are more big rigs than law enforcement officers on the road.

“We realized that truckers could be the eyes and ears for law enforcement,” Susan Dold said. She works with "Truckers Against Trafficking," a mobile exhibit that crosses the country in an eighteen wheeler.

Inside a renovated show trailer, advocates have built a kind of free museum, that tells the story of human trafficking in America.

“This happens in the United States,” Dold said. There have been victims of modern-day slavery reported in all fifty states. There are artifacts that belonged to victims of sex trafficking, some of whom were arrested for prostitution.

“These victims need a voice. They need people standing up for them,” Dold explained, “And we just know that truckers are wonderful people, that can be out there looking to save lives.”

There is information in the exhibit to help identify the signs of human trafficking. Advocates like Dold, hand out decals with hotline numbers and information about "see something, say something" training tailored to truck drivers.

“No one is immune to this crime,” she said.

Since the foundation of the “Freedom Drivers Project” ten years ago, more than 1100 victims of human trafficking have been identified.