MILWAUKEE -- The revenue from human trafficking is an estimated $32 billion -- and the cost to young victims is enormous. A Milwaukee campaign is aimed at putting a significant dent in the trade -- with help from men.
A still from the HEMAD campaign video.
Human trafficking is a supply and demand business. The supply will always be there. This campaign is aimed at diminishing the demand.
The first step of the "HEMAD Campaign" is getting men to watch a short video on the Convergence Resource Center website.
"Is this all I'm good for?" the video asks viewers. "Do you even care who I am?"
After watching the video, men are asked to share it and make a pledge to stand against human trafficking.
"I told the men, 'imagine that as your daughter,'" said Arnold Cifax, who took the pledge. "Because some of these have daughters that are young, and they were angry enough to say 'yeah, I want to take that kind of pledge'."
State Representative Jason Fields, D-Milwaukee, helped create the video.
"You're making a pledge and a vow to get involved, to be the solution, to be the remedy to these horrible trafficking incidents that occur in the state of Wisconsin," said Fields.
State Representative Jason Fields
Men have responded in Milwaukee, Sheboygan, Illinois, Las Vegas, California and as far away as Belize. The Convergence Resource Center sent them a wristband to let others know about their decision to take a stand.
One of the campaign's biggest takeaways is that awareness is key.
"As a man, when you get married -- bachelor parties," said Fields. "No one is taught that you may be contributing to this madness."
The campaign also stresses that speaking up against human trafficking is vital.
"We need you to say something," said Debbie Lassiter, Convergence Resource Center's executive director. "We need you to do something, and we're asking you as men.
The goal is to get 1,000 men to make the pledge to stand against human trafficking by Dec. 29. You can pledge HERE, and watch the HEMAD campaign video on YouTube HERE.