JIM THORPE, CARBON COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – The sidewalks in Jim Thorpe are seeping in bright red sand to ensure victims, like Sharron McGorry, don’t fall through the cracks.
“This stuff has to… it has to stop,” says Sharron McGorry of Jim Thorpe.
Starting at the tender age of three, Sharron says she was repeatedly raped by someone she trusted.
She adds, “it’s a lifelong sentence we pay for someone else’s crime.”
The ‘Red Sand Project’ gives human trafficking victim’s a voice. Once the public ceremony ends, a noticeable mark is left behind to raise awareness and create conversation.
“There’s been such a large increase in the number of child sex abuse cases, for instance. So to say human trafficking cases aren’t far behind isn’t an exaggeration,” says Carbon County District Attorney Jean Engler.
Experts say this area is especially prone to human trafficking because of the easy on and off access to the Pennsylvania Turnpike and Interstate 80. Engler adds, “and there are hotels and motels located near them.”
Sharron’s attacker left her damaged, but not defeated. She’s on the mend, her mental scars slowly healing. She says, “I’m no longer a victim. I’m a survivor, and a thriver.”
‘The Red Sand Project’ is a national initiative. Several counties across our region participated.
January is ‘National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month’.