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At upcoming training, health care providers can learn how to identify, help human trafficking victims

By Florida Department of Health in Marion County

January 24, 2019


OCALA, Fla.—Florida has the third highest rate of human trafficking in the United States, but many health professionals may be unaware of the signs of trafficking when victims are in their care. In support of National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, the Florida Department of Health in Marion County is hosting a special training next week to help providers identify potential victims and learn how to safely assist them.

“Human Trafficking: The role of health care providers,” will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 29, from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. in the department’s auditorium (1801 SE 32nd Ave., Ocala). Participants will learn what defines human trafficking, how trafficking differs from sex work, how to identify both a potential victim and trafficker, how to safely help victims, and local resources that are available for further help. For questions or more information, contact Kelly Conklin at 352-644-2612. To register, visit

Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery where traffickers profit from the control and exploitation of others. Criminalized under both federal and state law, human trafficking includes the transporting, soliciting, recruiting, harboring, providing or obtaining of another person for transport, for the purposes of forced labor, domestic servitude or sexual exploitation using force, fraud and/or coercion. Victims of trafficking may experience a host of health-related problems and are at high risk of injury, illness and even death from the circumstances of their forced treatment and bondage.

Visit the Department of Health’s human trafficking page for more information and resources designed to raise awareness and assist health care professionals. Additional links offer tips for identifying potential victims of human trafficking, suggested screening questions and a framework for a human trafficking protocol in a health care setting. These resources were prepared by the National Human Trafficking Hotline and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.