Dr. Wendy Stickle, chair of the Montgomery County Human Trafficking Prevention Committee and director of the University of Maryland's Criminology and Criminal Justice Program at Universities at Shady Grove, was interviewed by NBC4 Washington News about sex trafficking.
According to the most recent data, in 2020, the national human trafficking hotline received 529 substantive communications for issues related to human trafficking in Maryland. Those calls, texts, and emails resulted in 136 reports of potential human trafficking across the state.
Dr. Stickle says, “The pandemic has increased vulnerabilities, and yeah, it’s made it harder to detect human trafficking, sex trafficking in particular,” she said. “Everything went underground.”
“There’s a lot of demand here, and traffickers know that, and so they're going to come here because people will pay money,” she said.
Dr. Stickle teaches a course on Human Trafficking, aiming to expose students to ideas, opportunities, and challenges they may have never considered. Her goal is to empower students to be pioneers of change, working towards a world where human trafficking does not exist.
More information regarding this interview can be found on the NBC4 website.