For most people, flying is a good experience; where people jet off on holidays or adventures. You could be heading to a much anticipated, sun holiday or on an adventure to visit a relative or companion you haven’t seen for quite a while.
Tragically, the same doesn’t seem to happen for everybody.
Shelia Fredrick has been working as a flight orderly for quite a while and is accustomed to managing unusual and difficult circumstances with passengers on planes.
However, she never expected, that she’d witness something that would change her life at that time. On a trip between Seattle and San Francisco, this is precisely what happened.
Once the plane had reached cruising elevation, she spotted something unusual.
She recognized an elderly well-dressed man, sitting alongside a blonde young lady in shabby garments. When Shelia walked passed them the young lady grabbed her attention with a glance.
Shelia didn’t know why it felt the young lady’s look concerned her. At that time, she got an urgent feeling.
When she attempted to converse with the man, he right away wound up furious and guarded. Shelia started to speculate something was awry; that not all was as appeared.
A little while later, she chose to go to the toilet and leave a pen and paper. She hoped the young lady would utilize them if she required help.
At that point, Shelia passed the young lady again and signaled for her to go to the bathroom.
The young lady followed her signal, and when Shelia came back to the bathroom she located a note. According to a source, the note read: “I need help.”
Shelia called the authorities. When the plane landed, the police were present to seize the man.
The young lady was only 14-years of age. She had been a victim of human trafficking, having been abducted only two months prior.
In 2009, resigned flight attendant Nancy Rivard began the Airline Ambassadors International organization.
It trains flight staff to pay attention to victims of human trafficking; instructing them to recognize the signs.
These days, they cooperate with the US Customs and Border Police to neutralize human trafficking.
It was in 2011 that Shelia found the young lady in this particular story. From that point forward, she began working with the Airline Ambassadors association and has now received training to enable her to make to future judgments.
“There are many signs to be aware of,” Shelia says.
Following the incident, Shelia got a call from the young lady she had rescued. The two still keep in contact today.
The UN gauges that around 1.2 million kids per year succumb to trafficking. Young boys and girls alike are exploited; to things like cheap labor, illicit sex rackets and asking for cash. Often being transformed into child soldiers.
These are clearly things we can never totally accept.
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