Human trafficking has been a serious issue throughout the world. It results in mostly underaged girls becoming dependent on drugs and facing a life of abuse. One flight attendant’s quick thinking made sure there was one less victim in the world.
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Shelia Fedrick, who was formerly a model, works as a flight attendant for Alaska Airlines. Fedrick noticed a strange duo on the plane, one a 14 to 15-year-old girl who looked like she “had been through pure hell” and a well-dressed man.
The 49-year-old flight attendant would come to the strange duo regularly during the flight as she knew something was wrong. Whenever Fedrick would speak to the two, only the male would answer; the young girl would look away as she knew she wasn’t allowed to speak.
Fedrick continued to try to spark up conversation until the well-dressed man got upset with the flight attendant for talking to them so much. So she created a plan to assure herself that the young girl was okay. She directed the girl to a bathroom where she had written a note on the mirror asking if she needed help.
Fedrick’s suspicions were correct as the young girl responded, “she needed help.” Fedrick made the pilot aware of the situation, and the San Fransico police were called before they landed. Officers were waiting for the well-dressed man at the gate and arrested him.
“I’ve been a flight attendant for 10 years and it’s like I am going all the way back to when I was in training and I was like I could have seen these young girls and young boys and didn’t even know,” Fedrick told WTSP.
Years later, the flight attendant still keeps in contact with the young girl she saved, who is now in college. Fedrick’s quick thinking was instrumental in the rescue of a young teenage girl from a life of pain and suffering. So much so that other flight attendants are trained using her methods, according to former airline stewardess and founder of Airline Ambassadors, Nancy Rivard.
A group of 100 flight attendants flew to Huston to receive the training that Fedrick is responsible for, such as odd pairs, one rich and the other poor, people who insist on speaking over the other and if they appear to be under the influence of drugs.
Human trafficking is much more common than people may think in the United States. California, Florida, Texas and New York are the top 4 import and export states for sex trafficking victims in the U.S., according to humantraffickingsearch.