This article was originally published on Newschannel9.com.
There was a sea of white clothing Friday morning at the DoubleTree Hotel in downtown Chattanooga. It was called "Unite Wear White." The event served a jumping off point for a new coalition whose lone purpose is to fight human trafficking.
Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger said human trafficking is now a widespread problem.
"It used to be something we thought of as – not in our city, not in our county. Now we realize that over the past several years that it's an issue here as well," Coppinger said.
Jerry Redman of Second Life Chattanooga explained why they chose to wear the color white.
"White being a symbol of light, of hope and of solidarity in support of the victims," Redman said.
Friday was one of several events around Chattanooga this month for National Human Trafficking Month.
Danielle Roos is directing a play that chronicles the life of a Knoxville sex trafficking victim.
"The things that we want to do with our play is start discussions in families, communities, churches and schools," Roos said.
After the play there will be an open forum about ways to identify sex trafficking victims. The play runs Friday night at 7:30 p.m. It runs twice (2p.m. and 7:30p.m.) on Saturday. All three performances will be at the Family Justice Center in Chattanooga. The discussion will take place after each play.