, Press Release

All Things Judicial Spotlights Human Trafficking in the Charlotte-Metro Community

Guests discuss the 2023 report entitled Exploitation of Minors in the Queen City.

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In the latest episode of the All Things Judicial podcast, we focus on human trafficking in North Carolina. Recently, the North Carolina Human Trafficking Commission worked with the Charlotte Metro Human Trafficking Task Force in the release of its 2023 report entitled, Exploitation of Minors in the Queen City. This episode is hosted by Nancy Hagan, Project Analyst with the North Carolina Human Trafficking Commission. The guests include: Shawna Pagano, Director of Education and Community Engagement at Pat’s Place Child Advocacy Center; Hannah Arrowood, Executive Director of Present Age Ministries; and Dr. Stacy Reynolds, Medical Director, Human Trafficking EM Advocacy Team, Department of Emergency Medicine at Atrium Health. 

"In every single data collection year, 2020, 2021, and 2022, we had 10 and 11-year-old little girls targeted by human traffickers," Arrowood said on the podcast.  "I think that speaks volumes to the work that needs to be done in how we approach our preventative efforts and how we educate our kids to keep (them) safe."

On January 11, 2023, Supreme Court of North Carolina Chief Justice Paul Newby declared January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month for the North Carolina Judicial Branch. 

"It’s important to raise and spread awareness about this issue to help North Carolinians recognize and prevent these cruel crimes," said Newby. "We can help put an end to human trafficking in North Carolina only by rigorously gathering our resources and working collaboratively across government."

The North Carolina Human Trafficking Commission is the legislatively mandated leader of anti-human trafficking efforts in North Carolina per S.L. 2013-368. The Commission is charged primarily with examining and combating human trafficking; funding and facilitating research; creating measurement, assessment, and accountability measures; informing and educating law enforcement personnel, social services providers, and the general public; suggesting new policies, procedures, and legislation; and developing regional response teams and identifying gaps in law enforcement or service provision and recommending solutions.