WEST ORANGE, NJ — West Orange High School students and Student Assistance Counselors Amadeo Chirichiello and Jacklyn Headlam were recognized at the Jan. 27 Board of Education meeting for their participation in the New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking “Locker Slam” project.
In recognition of January as “Human Trafficking Awareness Month,” students received stickers from NJCAHT containing statistics and facts regarding human trafficking. Students “slammed” magnets on other students’ lockers to raise awareness of the issue. In 2019, more than 8,000 magnets were distributed in New Jersey middle and high schools. In 2020, NJCAHT plans to use more than 28,000 magnets to raise awareness of human trafficking warning signs for males and females, and statistics for New Jersey and across the nation.
West Orange students distributed approximately 500 magnets and, according to the NJCAHT website, “one magnet for every four lockers is an impactful amount.”
Students were excited to participate and show awareness in a different way than traditional announcements and tabling. Many volunteers stated, “Students have kept magnets for their own knowledge, keeping them in their lockers or bringing them home.”
Students recognized for participating in the Locker Slam were Victoria Bratsos, Amiya Franklin, Sesn Tewedle, Senay Dani, Br’an Kelly Jackson, Kyle Dorcely, Gabrielle Rodas, Daniel Moise, Brianna Dannemiller and Leslie Pineda.
The magnets had slogans such as: “People should not be for sale,” “Slavery still exists,” “Be a voice for the voiceless,” “Abolish modern-day slavery,” “There are more slaves today than ever before,” “Your voice can change the world” and “I am an abolitionist.”
Participants used the hashtag “#NJStudentsForFreedom” to connect with schools around the state taking awareness action.