Health department to participate in Red Sand Project

JACKSON, Tenn. — The Jackson-Madison County Regional Health Department will be participating in the Red Sand Project to raise awareness of human trafficking.

Health department staff members will be pouring red sand in sidewalk cracks at the health department on Wednesday morning.

The Red Sand Project is an art installment, which uses the sand to draw attention to human trafficking victims who fall through the cracks of society, according to a news release.

“Human trafficking is a major public health concern,” health educator Amanda Johnson said. “We want to raise awareness about this crime so people know what to look for and how to get help.”

According to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, a child is bought or sold for sex in the United States every two minutes, on average, and the average age is 13-years-old, the release says.

Health concerns commonly reported in trafficking victims can include:

  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Unintended or high-risk pregnancy
  • Substance abuse or addiction
  • Undetected or untreated diseases, such as diabetes or cancer

Common signs of human trafficking can include:

  • Lack of health care or denied medical services
  • Fears authority figures
  • Has a prepaid “burner” cell phone
  • Avoids eye contact
  • Branded or marked with a tattoo, such as a man’s name, symbol of money or barcode
  • Not able to speak for him or herself

If you or someone you know needs help to escape trafficking, call the Tennessee Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-855-558-6484.

Categories: Local News, News