We want you to know that human trafficking is illegal! You will not be punished for what you have been forced or coerced to do. Our desire is only to help you get free and somewhere safe. There is no cost. Someone WILL come get you. If you are not in our area of operation, we WILL coordinate with local organizations near you to provide you with rescure services. We can help get you to a safe shelter. We can help get you new identification documents and immigration Visas. If you are ready to run, we can come get you. For transportation, please call 1-800-789-9847
Please understand that your safety is our utmost priority. The Defender Foundation has no shelters or safe houses of its own at this time, but we utilize a network of shelters and safe houses that we have access to, in order to provide you with a safe place to go. We actively research the safety of each house. Once you allow us to help, we will utilize public and private resources on your behalf. A female Contact Team member will be with you at all times, from pick-up to arrival at the safe house . A safety team (Shield Team) will also be involved to make sure both you, and our Contact Team are safe. Usually you will hardly notice the Shield Team members, because they stay in the background; but they are there if you need them. After we have taken you to safety, we will arrange for a follow-up team to continue to help you. We do not just drop you off and forget about you. We will stay by your side, and we will get you the help you need.
When you call our 800 number, our phone volunteer will ask you some questions. These questions are necessary so that we can figure out how best to help you. Here is what you can expect her to ask you:
- Are you safe, can you get to a safe place?
- What level of danger should your retrieval team be expecting? We understand that you are possibly in a very dangerous situation, in fact, we expect it. Please give us an accurate description of this, who might try to prevent you from leaving and any other concerns you have so our Shield Teams knows what to expect.
- Do you know where you are? We know that a majority of victims have their location kept from them. Look for signs around you. Street signs, businesses, motels, hostels, numbers on your building, anything that can help us locate where you are. We prefer you to be able to get to a public place for the pickup, but if this is not possible, we need as many details as possible to plan your pickup.
- Is anyone else coming with you? How many? How old are you and the ages of anyone coming with you? This will determine what kind of safe place we can take you to.
- Adequately describe yourself, the traffickers and any other person we should know about.
The Phone Volunteer will tell you what time to expect the Female Contact Team and/or Shield Team to arrive. Do not show signs of nervousness, excitement or anxiety if you are still around the traffickers. Do not show any signs that you are leaving, such as packing, saying goodbye to ANYONE or acting out of character. We need you to sign a release form that states you came with us of your own free will. This form is very important as it also allows us to pick you up and to do follow-up care with you after you reach the secure shelter or safe house. Follow-up care will allow us to get you clothing, necessities, medication and to coordinate more long term housing as sometimes we will place you into a secure emergency shelter for the first 30 days. Our goal is to place you a more long term arrangement of housing and to help you completely readjust back into society with job and education training and to assist you in whatever way you deem fit.