COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA) — The South Carolina Human Trafficking Task Force held their quarterly meeting Friday morning.

The state task force discussed what steps they had taken in 2021 to crack down on human trafficking in the state. Regional task forces provided updates as well.

According to the task force, one of the biggest obstacles they’re facing right now is the lack of adequate shelter space for human trafficking victims.

Task force Director Kathryn Moorehead said, “As law enforcement investigates an increasing number of these cases and as task force members educate more members of the community about the signs of human trafficking, more and more victims are being identified.”

In the task force’s 2020 annual report, they recommended addressing this issue.

Friday, members of the task force spoke with the co-founders of the national non-profit organization Safe House Project.

The nonprofit aims to eradicate child human trafficking in the US by 2030. Co-founders say they hope to do this by education, survivor empowerment and safe housing.

CEO Kristi Wells told task force members, “Without a safe place to go, 80% of survivors will end up back in traffickers’ hands.” Safe House Project helps other organization establish safe housing for human trafficking victims.

If you need help or want to report possible human trafficking you can reach the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888. You can text the hotline at 233733 or live chat here.