AUSTIN, Texas — First Lady of Texas, Cecilia Abbott, announced a new campaign against human trafficking in the state of Texas on Thursday.
The 'Can You See Me?' campaign in a partnership with A21, a Fort Worth-based non-profit dedicated to providing education and resources against trafficking.
On Thursday, Abbott explained the importance of human trafficking awareness.
"Some are just young girls and boys, sold as mere property, as modern-day slaves," Abbott said.
The 'Can You See Me?' campaign includes billboards placed around the state, directing people to call 1-800-THE-LOST for assistance.
A21 also has a 'Can You See Me?' website dedicated to bringing awareness to the signs of human trafficking.
The National Human Trafficking Hotline reported more than 1,700 victims of trafficking in Texas in 2021, although not all cases are reported.
Unbound Now Waco, a local non-profit led by executive director Kristi Hayes, has been operating over the last decade to assist victims of trafficking and help spread awareness of the problem.
"One organization cannot do it by themselves. We have to do it with everyone," Hayes said, expressing gratitude for the First Lady's initiative.
Unbound Now also provides educational tools and trained over 4,000 people in the past year, including law enforcement, health care workers and educators.
To learn more human trafficking awareness tool, you can find the Human Trafficking 101 program from Unbound Now Waco here.