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DCFS joins state and federal law enforcement to combat trafficking

young man in hoodie
Kate Oseen

Caregivers and the public are urged to watch for signs of kids in trouble

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month.

Illinois' Department of Children and Family Services is partnering with state and federal agencies to raise awareness of human trafficking - particularly as it applies to youth in state treatment and care.

Youth in care can be more susceptible to trafficking, experts say - and they're training caregivers and children to watch for danger signs.

Those signs include children who are controlled by adults, who may speak for them. They can also be children who appear out of place - especially given the time of day or night. Trafficked kids can also look disheveled - in clothes that don't fit or are dirty... or they could be in clothes that seem too expensive for them to afford.

Caregivers and others are urged to look for signs of abuse, too - red marks or bruises, and kids who have no forms of identification.

If you suspect trafficking or other abuse, you should call 911 or the DCFS Child Abuse Hotline. That number is 1-800-25-ABUSE.

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