Expect to see your Facebook feed taken over by red Xs this Feb 23, 2017.
Members of Congress, celebrities including Ashton Kutcher, and others will change their profile photo for the End It Movement's "Shine A Light On Slavery" Day.
The day, which raises awareness about modern-day slavery and human trafficking, has taken place for the last five years. Two years ago, Senator Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican, introduced official legislation to address the issue with the End Modern Slavery Initiative Act. He cited a chilling statistic: "More than 27 million people, many of them women and children, suffer under forced labor and sexual servitude in over 165 countries around the world, including our own,” According to Corker, that figure is higher than at any other time in the world's history.
Last week, the End Modern Slavery hearing was held by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and included a moving testimony from Kutcher, himself an anti-trafficking activist.
Go to the website for the End It awareness campaign, where you'll find downloadable resources, including red Xs that you can upload to your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter profiles. You can also take a tube of red lipstick, mark an X on your hand, and snap a photo to post. The day's official hashtags, which will likely start trending on Twitter, include #EndSlaveryAct and #EndItMovement.
Mass profile photo changes aren't the solution to the problem, but they are an important and powerful way of showing solidarity and raising awareness.
By: Madeline Buxton / Refenery 29