There are 15 girls who have gone missing across New York state in the month of August. Have you seen any of these young ladies? MissingKids.org keeps track of missing children around the country. You can visit the site and search by city, state, name and other attributes. Most, if not all, of these girls, are teens. While it doesn't give the specific situation for each young lady, some of them may be runaways. If you have seen any of these girls, please contact authorities as soon as possible so they can be reunited with their loved ones. You can also submit a "quick report" via the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children website.

According to the New York State Interagency Task Force on Human Trafficking 2019 annual report, 85 percent of the human trafficking cases in New York are female. Sex work is the primary area where exploited people end up, with 65 percent of those trafficked being forced into the sex trade, according to the report. Labor is the other area, where 27 percent of human trafficking victims were forced into and 8 percent were forced into both.

If you or someone you know is a victim of human trafficking, you can contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 or text 233733. I can't imagine what their friends and families are going through right now. I pray that these young ladies are safely reunited with their loved ones.

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