Volume 11 Issue 1
Human Trafficking in the News
LVMPD: Learn the subtle signs of human trafficking in busy areas
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- This is the time of the year families head out to a lot of crowded holiday events, go shopping and step outside of their normal routine. That's why the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is urging families to talk to children, especially teens.
6,000 men pledge to end sex trafficking in Milwaukee
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A local nonprofit is working to have 6,000 men take a pledge to end sex trafficking. The campaign precedes next summer's Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee, an event that will draw tens of thousands of people to southeast Wisconsin.
Decriminalizing the sex trade isn't the answer -- the Equality Model is
In the past year, bills to fully decriminalize the sex trade were introduced in both the Washington, D.C., and New York State legislatures. The bills were accompanied by aggressive
pushing a "sex work is work" ideology. But is it really a job like any other? This question divides many people when discussing the sex trade, which includes stripping, brothel- , street- , gang- , internet- , and hotel-based prostitution, as well as pornography. The term "sex work"- often used to describe the system of prostitution - was actually
coined by those with a financial interest in the sex industry,
including pimps, to normalize and mainstream its harms.
Happy New Year! Recruitment ongoing
for mobile army of transportation professionals
In the fight against human trafficking, the more thorough the education and awareness, the better the equipping, the more people actively engaged, the greater the opportunity for success. Members of the trucking, bus and energy industries, working as extra eyes and ears for law enforcement, continue to make a significant contribution in closing loopholes traffickers are exploiting and making possible the recovery of victims.
This month is National Human Trafficking Awareness Month, so be sure and share what you know with people in your sphere of influence about human trafficking and some of the efforts your industry is making to battle this crime. 2020 also marks the twentieth anniversary of the passage of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, the landmark legislation on human trafficking.
Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT) will be participating in a number of events as part of this month's activities. Two of those will be in Washington, D.C. On Jan. 13, Kendis Paris, TAT executive director, will be a panelist at the USDOT's session of the Transportation Research Board's 2020 Annual Conference. Focus of the session will be "Combating Human Trafficking in the Transportation Sector: Everyone Has a Role."
Two days later, Paris will speak at a U.S. Chamber of Commerce event, "Integrating Services for Trafficking Survivors." The forum will discuss techniques to empower survivors and the role of the business community and its partners to provide resources for healing. Non-governmental organizations, advocates, and community leaders have joined forces with businesses to provide housing and shelter, educational opportunities and skills-based training for survivors. Participants will also talk about the use of technology to identify trafficking victims.
Thanks to you, TAT blows end-of-year giving goals
out of the water
After a tree-decorating contest,
Central Transport auctioned off the employees' handiwork as part of their fundraiser for TAT.
Creative fundraising and generous giving from individuals and organizations contributed to TAT's very successful two-month, end-of-year giving campaign. The campaign, with a $75,000 matching grant from N2GIVES, raised over $300,000.
A number of organizations held special employee fundraisers to provide TAT with a donation. One was Central Transport. With a goal of raising $10,000 for TAT, Central Transport ran their campaign from Nov. 18-Dec. 13. In addition to encouraging private donations, Central Transport held:
- Casual for a Cause Day -- Employees could wear jeans for $5 on a Friday to give to TAT. Many of their terminal locations also took part in this.
- A cash raffle -- Employees purchased tickets for a variety of prizes; winners were announced at the holiday luncheon.
- PTO days raffle -- Employees bought raffle tickets for a day of Paid Time Off; winners were announced at the holiday luncheon.
- A Christmas tree raffle -- Central Transport had a tree-decorating contest and then after the winners were announced, each tree was auctioned off, live, at the holiday luncheon.
At the holiday luncheon, held Dec. 12 for more than 200 Central Transport corporate and office employees, TAT Director of Corporate Engagement Laura Cyrus provided a short Lunch and Learn presentation, and then received a check for $10,307 for TAT. The following day, more money came in and, coupled with the auction of the Christmas trees, the grand total raised came to $11,777.
Peter Dwyer, president of Human Resources at Central Transport, said, "Truck drivers are in a unique position to be the knights of the road to help people in need and to spot strange behaviors. When we heard of Truckers Against Trafficking, we knew this was something our 4,000-strong driver work force at Central Transport wanted to be a part of ... not to mention our generous corporate team who raised $11,777 to help the cause!"
"It was extremely fun to be a part of the holiday luncheon at Central," stated Cyrus. "I was so impressed with the creativity of the little fundraisers they had going throughout their campaign, and it was exciting to be a part of the PTO
raffle drawing and the live auction of the Christmas trees. It's clear that everyone at Central -- from the leadership on down -- is moved and motivated by TAT's work. We're so pleased Central is not only training its drivers and employees on human trafficking, but also that they would choose to support our work financially. Thank you to Pete, Ben, Kristen, Kelly, and Anne for their great support of our work and all the effort that went into this fundraiser ... and to the Central employees across the country who participated. You all are amazing, as is your generosity!"
Two TAT programs gain new employees
Busing on the Lookout (BOTL) and Coalition Builds (CB) have each taken on a new employee to help with an expanding workload.
As BOTL program specialist, Lexi Higgins is focused primarily on equipping and
empowering school bus drivers to combat human trafficking. She is passionate about leveraging relationships and communication channels for education, mobilization and impact.
Throughout her professional career, Higgins has dedicated her talents and efforts towards tackling gender-based violence through systems and culture change. Past experience includes positions with the Association of Junior Leagues International, the University of Washington Women's Center and as a Peace Corps volunteer in Guatemala, where she partnered with a local NGO to train and empower rural women's groups. She also serves in volunteer leadership roles with SAFER (Students Active For Ending Rape) and the New Jersey Coalition Against Sexual Assault.
"I'm excited to join such an incredible team, who are dedicated not only to combating human trafficking, but to doing it strategically and systemically," she said. "I know the work I do with TAT will matter, and I look forward to contributing towards the already monumental achievements of the organization."
Ruthie Stanfill fills the position of CB specialist, focusing on building strategic public-private partnerships between the trucking, bus, truck stop and energy industries with law enforcement and government agencies. She has 10 years in operational and project management.
"TAT's effective, logical and grass-roots approach to the fight against human trafficking is why I joined the team," she states. "I am excited to be a part of an organization that is educating organizations, public figures and businesses which can make a difference and result in the recovery of victims."
Jan. 6-10 - Energy Empowers Freedom Tour, Houston, TX, FDP and Ashley Smith, Energy Operations director, presenting and Susan Dold, TAT systems administrator, and Helen Van Dam, FDP director, attending
Jan. 11-14 - American Busing Association Marketplace, Omaha, NE, Annie Sovcik, TAT BOTL director, presenting
Jan. 13 -- Transportation Research Board's 2020 Annual Conference, Washington, DC, Kendis Paris, TAT executive director, presenting
Jan. 14 - Law enforcement training, Bossier City, LA, Kylla Lanier, TAT deputy director, and Annika Huff, TAT field trainer and survivor-advocate, presenting
Jan. 14 - SmartDrive kick-off and sales team training, San Diego, CA, Molly Griffiths, TAT Corporate Engagement manager, presenting
Jan. 15 - U.S. Chamber of Commerce event "Integrating Services for Trafficking Survivors," Washington, DC, Kendis Paris, TAT executive director, presenting
Jan. 15 - ProDrivers Transportation Safety and Compliance Seminar, Albuquerque, NM, Ashley Smith, TAT director of Energy Operations, presenting
Jan. 15-16 - Arkansas Highway Police law enforcement training, Marion, AR, Kylla Lanier, TAT deputy director, and Annika Huff, TAT field trainer and survivor-advocate, presenting
Jan. 16 - Mississippi Coalition Build, Gulfport, MS, FDP and Esther Goetsch, TAT CB director, Beth Jacobs, TAT field trainer, and Louie Greek, TAT training specialist, presenting, with Ruthie Stanfill, CB specialist, attending
Jan. 20-22 - United Motorcoach Association Expo, Nashville, TN, Annie Sovcik, TAT BOTL director, and Lexi Higgins, TAT BOTL specialist, manning a booth
Jan. 21-22 - Captive Resources Insurance Summit, Clearwater, FL, Laura Cyrus, TAT Corporate Engagement director, presenting
Jan. 21 -Junior League of New Orleans "Junior League Takes the Wheel" event, New Orleans, LA, FDP and Susan Dold, TAT systems administrator, presenting
Jan. 22-23- Arkansas Highway Police law enforcement training, Alma, AR, Kylla Lanier, TAT deputy director, and Annika Huff, TAT field trainer and survivor-advocate, presenting
Jan. 23-24 - UPS Smart Hub event, Atlanta, GA, FDP and Helen Van Dam, FDP director, attending
Jan. 29 - Toronto Trucking Association, Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada, Heather Fry, TAT Canada director, presenting
Jan. 29 - Bristol-Myers Squibb Sustainability event, New Brunswick, NJ, Laura Cyrus, TAT Corporate Engagement director, presenting
Jan. 30 - Omnitracs event, Dallas, TX, FDP and Helen Van Dam, FDP director, presenting
TAT's work is made possible through the generous support of our corporate sponsors, foundation partners and individual donors. Our education, training, legislative engagement, and advocacy efforts would not exist without those who invest in the change that we work towards each day. If you are interested in learning more about how you can provide financial support, please visit our corporate engagement webpage
or contact Laura Cyrus at
612-888-4828 or email@example.com to explore our giving opportunities.
Andy and Karin Larsen,
Lou and Ronda Leeburg, Bob Paris,
Scott and Terry
Mark and Julie Mihevc, Anna McCoy,
Michael Mowat and Janet Runbeck
Karen Rasmussen, Dan and Emily Dykstra,
George Bunker, Todd Miller, Rich McArdle