BROWNWOOD, Texas - It's called modern day slavery. Human trafficking provides billions of dollars each year to organized crime groups and even terrorists.
It goes on in the United States and in Texas.
The Brown County Community Resource Coordinating Group, the CRCG, along with Traffick 911, a Ft. Worth based group, are hosting an hour long presentation Tuesday at Family Services Center starting at 9:30 a.m. on human trafficking.
"It's despicable, and how would you even imagine such a thing happening?" said Bob Contreras, co-chair of the Brown County CRCG.
It's the fastest growing crime in the world: human trafficking.
It provides a source of income, $32 billion a year, to it's perpetrators, and 99% of victims are never rescued.
Child sex trafficking strikes a personal chord with Contreras.
"Another place in Texas where I was a public school teacher, where in fact, a mother and a father had a young daughter, and they were addicts. Their daughter was 12, and so the way they earned money for drugs was through use of their daughter," said Contreras.
He said there are groups of children who are more vulnerable to trafficking than others.
"Runaways, kids who are involved in drugs, and many times, kids who are involved in gangs," said Contreras.
Michelle Wells is a former chair of CRCG and notes human trafficking is on the rise.
"The economy is a big factor in terms of the numbers and what we're seeing, I think also drugs are a major issue," said Wells.
And it's happening here in Brown County.
"It's not just in the big cities, and it's getting more and more in the rural areas, which that's us," said Contreras.
The program tomorrow at Family Services Center is open to the public.
For more information on the Ft. Worth based group, Traffick 911, visit http://www.traffick911.com/.