Howard County Executive Calvin Ball recently joined representatives from HopeWorks, the county’s Office of Human Trafficking Prevention and the Howard County Police Department (HCPD) to fill pavement cracks outside the county’s George Howard Building with red sand to honor victims and survivors and raise awareness about human trafficking.

Between 2014 through 2018, the HCPD handled 93 cases involving human trafficking, resulting in 29 arrests and 58 identified victims. Due to the hidden nature of this crime, these cases reflect only a small portion of the total prevalence of human trafficking in Howard County.

The ceremony was held as part of the Red Sand Project. Established in 2014 by New York City-based experiential artist Molly Gochman, the Red Sand Project seeks to bring attention to a crime that has impacted more than 40.3 million people worldwide.