Volume 12 | Issue 11
November 2021
Human trafficking in the news
UPS Named 2021 TAT Champion Award Winner
in the Organization Category
UPS has been named the winner of the 2021 TAT Champion Award in the Organization Category. Kendis Paris, executive director of Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT), presented the award to Lou Rivieccio, UPS Corporate Transportation president, and Nikki Clifton, president of UPS Social Impact and The UPS Foundation, at a luncheon at the American Trucking Associations Management Conference and Exhibition Oct. 25 in Nashville, Tennessee.

The fight against the injustice of human trafficking is the work of thousands of dedicated and committed people taking place on continents and in countries around the world. Without the support, commitment and actions of the organizations, associations and state agency partners TAT works with, the gains made in the fight against human trafficking in the United States would take a huge leap backward. Each year, therefore, TAT recognizes and honors the outstanding creative, innovative, generous and dedicated efforts of specific partners, whose actions have significantly helped to engage more members of the industries TAT works with, as well as the efforts of more agencies and organizations within their state and the nation, in the fight to end the crime of human trafficking.

UPS began its partnership with TAT in 2016. But, in addition to its work with TAT, which includes being a TAT sponsor at the highest – North Star -- level, training more than 100,000 of their drivers, donating over 40 hauls for TAT’s mobile museum to events across the nation, allowing employees to be involved in numerous capacities with TAT on company time to spread awareness of human trafficking and the fight against it and serving on TAT’s Board of Directors since 2012, UPS also uses its influence through the trucking industry to encourage other companies to become TAT trained.

"When we say that UPS is a 'north star' partner of TAT, no exaggeration is implied,” explained Paris. “They truly help to guide our work, by marshaling their resources on behalf of counter-trafficking initiatives, providing thought leadership, and supporting their drivers’ changemaking volunteerism. In doing so, they serve as a social-good exemplar to others in private industry, and we're thrilled to name them our 2021 TAT Champion Award winners!"

UPS has adopted an enterprise-wide anti-trafficking-in-persons policy, which strictly prohibits the use of any UPS assets or resources for any purpose that would enable the trafficking of persons. They partner with the DHS Blue Campaign and teamed up with Wellspring, a Georgia-based survivor’s advocacy program, to provide employment opportunities to survivors of human trafficking.

UPS is also leveraging the power of corporate philanthropy to invest in organizations like the United Way Worldwide’s Center on Human Trafficking and Slavery and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. That partnership employs a comprehensive and ground-breaking approach which convenes community leaders – including relief and human service agencies, medical providers, local government, employers, advocates, citizens and more – around the singular issue of fighting local human trafficking, in many cases, for the first time. Through this collaboration, they're identifying needs and gaps at the community level, including housing, services, training and policy.

Additionally, UPS employees have donated more than $5 million toward the Anti-Human Traffick Impact Fund through United Way Center on Human Trafficking and Slavery.

In many public forums and presentations, UPS leadership use the opportunities they’re given to educate others on what they can do to join the fight. A TED Talk given by Clifton, detailing three ways businesses can fight human trafficking and personalize their efforts through their own “special sauce,” has now been seen by more than a million people.

Clifton shared, “Our work with TAT aligns with UPS’s purpose to move our world
forward on delivering what matters. We are honored to accept this award and are
proud to say that UPS drivers are part of the everyday heroes keeping communities safe by identifying and reporting red flags of human trafficking networks.”
From left: Lou Rivieccio and Nikki Clifton, from UPS, both spoke following the presentation of the TAT Champion Award in the Organization Category to UPS by Kendis Paris, TAT executive director.
FDP attends ATA MCE
For the first time in its history, the Freedom Drivers Project (FDP) attended the American Trucking Associations Management Conference and Exhibition (ATA MCE). Dressed in its new trailer wrap, the FDP attracted close to a hundred people who toured its exhibits, as well as many more in productive conversations.

“We’re so grateful for our partnership with the ATA,” stated Brandy Belton, FDP director. “With such a comprehensive agenda for this event, it was wonderful of them to not only give us a platform to present our TAT Champion Award, but also to donate space for the FDP to attend. This conference is attended by so many influential industry members that we appreciate the opportunity to take part in a significant way.”
The FDP sported its new trailer wrap for the ATA MCE.
Howes uses multiple means to increase awareness
about human trafficking
A TAT sponsor for five years, Howes Products is serious about increasing human trafficking awareness. In the past few months, they have inducted TAT into the Howes Hall of Fame as the first inductee of 2021; they’ve arranged for TAT to be interviewed on two significant trucker radio shows as well as written up in print media; they’ve increased their TAT sponsorship level from Silver to Gold, making sure their donation is given in time for TAT’s $120,000 matching grant fundraiser; and they’ve used their influence in Rhode Island to talk about TAT to their own customers and their state’s CDL schools.

“We are truly honored and inspired by our induction into the Howes Hall of Fame,” said Kylla Lanier, TAT’s deputy director. “This is one more way in which our partners at Howes have shown their dedication to raising awareness about human trafficking and leveraging their networks on TAT’s behalf. Throughout the years we’ve worked with Howes, their heart for the victims of this crime has been evident both at a personal and corporate level. With more and more truckers getting involved each day, we genuinely appreciate the recognition by Howes, as it shines a light that will serve to draw in even more drivers, growing our network of eyes and ears even further in pursuit of our goal to eradicate human trafficking.”

“We are in awe of the incredible work being done by Truckers Against Trafficking and are truly honored to induct them into our Howes Hall of Fame,” commented Erika Howes, VP of Business Development at Howes Products. “With around 3,000 hotline calls having been made and over 1,300 victims having been identified so far, it is easy to see the real impact Truckers Against Trafficking is making. We invite everyone in the trucking and related industries to take action, get certified and become an everyday hero.”

The Howes Hall of Fame serves as a platform for Howes to acknowledge and thank all the great work that has, and does, go into the trucking and agricultural industries. With the goal of recognizing unique achievements across a broad spectrum of categories, the Hall provides a showcase that will live on for generations. The Howes Hall of Fame officially launched in 2020 as part of the Howes Family’s celebration of 100 years in business. It can be viewed now at www.howesproducts.com/HOF.
First Coalition Build in Idaho achieves results
A standing-room-only crowd of more than 100 people gathered in Meridian, Idaho on Oct. 7 for TAT’s first Coalition Build (CB) in that state.

Co-hosted by the Idaho Trucking Association, Idaho State Police, Canyon County Sheriff’s Office, Idaho Transportation Department and TAT, the event drew Idaho Governor Brad Little and worked to help participants identify ways to partner together to combat human trafficking. Participants included law enforcement, government personnel and key industry representatives from trucking, bus and transit, along with employees from social service agencies.

As a result of the CB, law enforcement, industry and local transit agencies have committed to training their staff over the next few months. The Boise Police Department will be sharing materials from TAT and Busing on the Lookout (BOTL) with local bus and trucking companies, and Debbie Maxwell, from Treasure Valley Transit, held a training later in the month, which included members from the Idaho Anti-Trafficking Coalition. Maxwell said, "Treasure Valley Transit is committed to dedicating a portion of each safety meeting over the next year to human trafficking awareness."

Idaho has already adopted the full Iowa MVE model. The Idaho Transportation Department stocks ports of entry with TAT materials, and the Idaho Department of Education is introducing all bus drivers to BOTL materials by coordinating with the proper agencies.

Survey results generated positive comments about the speakers and the effectiveness of the training.
Connecting the Dots looks at trafficking in Canada
through the influence of colonialism 
Colonialism has been a major contributing factor to the presence and growth of human trafficking in Canada, especially among the Indigenous population, according to the 2019-2020 report on human trafficking published by the Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking.

To explore this topic, TAT hosted a virtual webinar on Oct. 26 called Connecting the Dots, with speakers and panelists which included Indigenous survivors and those who work directly with this population. Speaking at the webinar were Candice Shaw, executive director of the Ottawa Rape Crisis Center (ORCC), and Shelagh Roxburgh, senior analyst for the Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking, with panel members Kayla Spagnoli and Veronica Spade from Minwaashin Lodge, and Bryanna Brown, survivor-advocate.

One of the 109 webinar participants, Kavita Ambu, the Safety and Compliance Administration supervisor for Wesbell Logistics, said, “I believe the panel that presented today did an exceptional job of recognizing that colonialism and Indigenous rights are still something we are fighting against today. They also reframed the lens through which individuals may view Indigenous peoples, based on a bias that may have been taught to them at an early age through history books/education systems. They recognized that violence towards the Indigenous community has deep roots, but it is possible for change … and to realize that trafficking is not just what you see in movies/tv-shows; it could be something as modern as getting an invitation to network in the modeling industry through your Instagram DMS. It does not just have to be getting picked up on the side of the road, but instead can be using technology and social media to access and target vulnerable populations easily. Therefore, it is now more important than ever to recognize the signs of trafficking and be aware of the resources available to you.”

When surveyed, 100 percent of participants said they learned more about some of the unique challenges Indigenous survivors face and that they’d recommend the training to others. The action steps they’d consider taking included continuing to learn about indigenous experiences and colonialism, sharing this information with their company or agency, considering supporting local indigenous organizations and advocating for government to implement the TRC and MMIWG calls.

Speakers and panelists provided information from personal experience and resources including the UCLA Law Review, Human Rights Watch and the Canadian Journal of Women and Law. They shared action steps people can take, such as ONN – 5 ways your nonprofit can take action now to support Indigenous communities and TVO - Five ways you can put the ‘calls for justice’ from the MMIWG report into action. But Roxburgh stressed, “Though many people may be asking for clearer direction regarding what they can do, the reality is that much of the work has to begin with learning and unlearning. As is often stressed, truth comes before reconciliation, so, overall, my recommendation is to emphasize education and reflection over action as the starting point.”

Help us meet a $120,000 matching grant by Berger North!
Berger North is offering TAT a $120,000 matching grant if we can raise that amount by year’s end. Won’t you help us? Double your donation by giving now.
Traffickers look for people with vulnerabilities because that can make them easier to exploit. Data shows that the vast majority of trafficking victims identified in the United States are people who have historically faced discrimination: people of color, Indigenous communities, immigrants and people who identify as LGBTQ+ are disproportionately victimized. In addition, people living in poverty, or foster care, or are struggling with addiction, trauma, abuse or unstable housing, are all at comparatively higher risk for trafficking. The more we know about what human trafficking really looks like, the better we’ll be able to recognize a victim and make the call.

November 2021 Calendar of Events
Nov. 2 – Illinois Coalition Build, Bloomington, IL, FDP and Susan Dold, TAT systems administrator, attending; Esther Goetsch, CB director, and Beth Jacobs, TAT field trainer, presenting
Nov. 2 – Sold virtual conference, Laura Cyrus, Corporate Engagement director, presenting 
Nov. 4-5 – Atlas World Group Annual Convention, San Antonio, TX, Laura Cyrus, Corporate Engagement director, presenting 
Nov. 8 – FDP at UPS, Commerce City, CO, Brandy Belton, FDP director, and Susan Dold, TAT systems administrator, presenting
Nov. 8 – Kriska Transportation, Canada, Liz Williamson, TAT training specialist and survivor-advocate, presenting virtually to driver fleet
Nov. 9 – Fall 2021 Let’s Talk about Forced Labor virtual workshop of the University of Arkansas, sponsored by J.B. Hunt, with Greer Woodruff, senior vice president of Safety, Security and Driver Personnel at J. B. Hunt, John Kimzey, driver/mentor, Kendis Paris, TAT executive director, and Liz Williamson, TAT training specialist and survivor-advocate, presenting
Nov. 10 – Zonta Group of Lamar, virtual, Louis Greek, TAT training specialist, presenting
Nov. 10-11 – Protective Insurance Claims and Safety Seminar, Carmel, IN, Laura Cyrus, Corporate Engagement director, presenting 
Nov. 10 – Southeast Virtual Truck Stop Training, Louie Greek, TAT training specialist, and Liz Williamson, TAT training specialist and survivor-advocate, presenting
Nov. 16 – Louisiana Bus and Casino Coalition Build with FDP, Shreveport, LA, Annie Sovick, BOTL director, Louis Greek, TAT training specialist, and Beth Jacobs, TAT training specialist and survivor-advocate, presenting, and Susan Dold, TAT systems administrator, attending
Nov. 23 – Day & Ross, Canada, Liz Williamson, TAT training specialist and survivor-advocate, presenting virtually to driver fleet
Thank you to our copper level and above individual donors!
Jonathan and Jill Lim, Bob Paris, Andy and Karin Larsen, Diane Reed, Douglas Kegler
Scott and Terry Koch, Anna McCoy, Anne & Merlin Namuth
Mark and Julie Mihevc, Chris Ripani, Stephanie Guindy, Amy Reitmar, Runbeck/Mowat Fund
George Cravens, Patti Gillette, Linda Burtwistle, Ken Johnson, Mike and Karen Kuykendall, Kent Marshall, Don Blake, Scott Perry, Grinnell Family, Mr. and Mrs. Lee Turner, Amber Throckmorton, Dan and Emily Dykstra, Michael Nelson, Jacqueline Daves, Nicholas and Jane Nagel, Tod Kroon, Lou and Rhonda Leeburg, Charlton & Laura Wimberly, Judith Ridgley