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Human trafficking film to be shown at Iowa Central tonight

Iowa Central Community College Diversity Committee will host a viewing of a documentary by an Iowa filmmaker tonight in the auditorium of the Bioscience and Health Sciences Building.

“Gridshock” is a film about sex trafficking in the state of Iowa, created by Des Moines-area film director Vanessa McNeal.

The documentary will start at 7 p.m. and will be followed by a question and answer session with McNeal.

Iowa Central Diversity Committee Chairperson Kris Nerem-Lowery said she had been following McNeal’s filmmaking for the past few years and had wanted to attend a viewing when “Gridshock” was released last spring, but was unable to attend.

“When we had the opportunity to bring it to our campus, we jumped at the idea, knowing that there were a lot of individuals who were interested in that topic and wanted more information,” she said.

Nerem-Lowery thinks it’s important for Iowans to learn about and address the human trafficking epidemic in the United States.

“I think there’s a big myth surrounding human trafficking, believing that it’s not happening around here, it’s not happening in Iowa,” she said. “And this documentary is definitely going to disprove that myth. I think that it’s going to open a lot of peoples’ eyes about what that looks like, what human trafficking looks like, that it’s happening in our neighborhoods and our towns and our small, rural communities. And it’s not what you think it is.”

The event is free and open to the public.

“I hope that we have a great turnout because I just think it’s really great information to share with the community,” Nerem-Lowery added.

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