Patricia was living in a small Guatemalan village when she met Hector. She agreed to come back to America with him, motivated by his promises of a waitressing job. Upon arrival, he confiscated her documents and forced her to engage in commercial sexual services across the country.
Years later, Patricia was given the National Human Trafficking Hotline number. The Polaris team that operates the National Hotline helped connect her to counseling and legal services, offering life-changing support as she works toward overcoming the trauma she experienced.
Delta Air Lines is partnering with anti-trafficking organization, Polaris, through a $1 million sponsorship that will support the organization’s activities, including the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline. The hotline is an immediate resource for victims in need of critical services as well as a tool for the public to report suspected human trafficking.
The National Human Trafficking Hotline can be accessed by calling 1-888-373-7888, or by sending a text to Polaris at “BeFree” (233733).
Delta's sponsorship will ensure Polaris can staff the call center with experienced “Hotline Advocates.” With more calls coming in from survivors than ever, funding will help modernize the hotline and optimize the technology needed to provide the most effective and efficient service.
“The work of Polaris and the National Human Trafficking Hotline are integral to fighting human trafficking where we live and fly,” said Allison Ausband, Delta’s Senior Vice President – In-Flight Service. “A single call can protect a victim or change their entire trajectory, and that’s not to be taken lightly.”
This Polaris partnership is pivotal to Delta’s proactive strategy to fight human trafficking and end modern-day slavery. Since 2011, when Delta was the first airline to sign the End Child Prostitution, Pornography and Trafficking (ECPAT) Code of Conduct, the global carrier has trained over 54,000 employees to spot indicators of human trafficking and supports anti-trafficking legislation across the U.S. Delta also gives customers the opportunity to donate miles through Polaris and the SkyWish program, which helps survivors seek a safe place, return to their homes, or receive critical or legal care.
“We are honored to partner with Delta Air Lines in such a profound way and are beyond grateful for their support of the National Human Trafficking Hotline,” said Bradley Myles, CEO of Polaris. “Delta is a leader in the fight against human trafficking, working tirelessly to provide human trafficking training to their employees to help spot this crime and equipping survivors with resources they need to rebuild their lives.”
The National Hotline has been in operation for almost 10 years and has handled 38,000 cases of human trafficking. Since January, more than 6,100 cases have been reported, with a 10 percent increase in cases reported directly from survivors. The hotline can be reached 24 hours, 365 days a year and in more than 200 different languages.
As part of the sponsorship, Polaris will also build upon the extensive training Delta provides to employees by developing new training and webinars, while tailoring the hotline's internal protocols to respond to questions and tips provided directly from Delta employees.