HOW TO JOIN THE END IT MOVEMENT WITH ECPAT-USA

HOW TO JOIN THE END IT MOVEMENT WITH ECPAT-USA

On February 23, 2017, ECPAT-USA will be partnering with the END IT Movement in order to shine a light on modern day slavery. Organizations, individuals and companies around the world will join in an awareness campaign on Twitter and Facebook to join together to fight for freedom.

Here’s how you can be part of the movement:

Step 1: On February 23rd, draw red ❌’s on your hands.

Step 2: Take a photo. Continue reading

ECPAT’s Week of Action in DC: From Fighting Online Sex Trafficking of Children to Previewing the Legislative Road Ahead

 

ECPAT’s Week of Action in DC: From Fighting Online Sex Trafficking of Children to Previewing the Legislative Road Ahead

By Faiza Mathon-Matheiu, Director of Public Policy and Government Relations

For the past 16 years, Backpage.com has been the leading website in the online sex trafficking of children. According to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 73% of all reports of child sex trafficking occur on Backpage.com. Thanks in large part to a newly launched effort, advocates, survivors, and lawmakers are fighting back and joining together to force the company to be held accountable for facilitating the sexual abuse of children. A new documentary, I Am Jane Doe, which opens in 6 cities, including New York City, today, is mobilizing stakeholders across the country.The powerful film focuses on the battle being waged by American mothers on behalf of their middle-school age daughters who were victims of sex trafficking on Backpage.com. The film follows their gut-wrenching fight as these families attempt to hold Backpage.com responsible through the legal system for its part in this horrific form of abuse.

The film is already generating conversation among lawmakers. At a screening in D.C., members of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Rob Portman (R-OH), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO) discussed the Committee’s groundbreaking investigation that uncovered the extent to which Backpage.com has engaged in the online sex trafficking of children. The following day, ECPAT-USA, Shared Hope International, and My Life My Choice in coordination with and Congressman Ted Poe held a Congressional briefing where panelists included two powerful mothers whose daughters were sold for sex on Backpage. They shared their stories about the impact it has had on their girls and their families. Now the two are at a forefront of the movement, turning their anger into activism and speaking out across the country about what needs to be done to prevent other families from experiencing the tragedies they have experienced. Senator Richard Blumenthal, Representative Ann Wagner, and Representative Chris Smith also gave remarks about the need to amend the federal Communications Decency Act so that companies like Backpage cannot continue to make millions of dollars a year from the abuse of young children.

The week started with the Second Annual Human Trafficking Symposium hosted by the McCain Institute. The Institute is a leader in convening multiple power sectors to brainstorm on policies and program to end trafficking. ECPAT-USA’s Executive Director moderated the Legislative Road Ahead panel with federal legislators in the fight against human trafficking – Senator Bob Corker (R-TN), Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and Congressman Ted Poe (R-TX). Each member of Congress discussed their recent success and accomplishments as well as the legislative path forward. As we look forward to the reauthorization of the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Act this year, strong partnerships with members of Congress will ensure that the package will strengthen the U.S. commitment to protect children from commercial sexual exploitation.

A Word from ECPAT-USA’s Executive Director: Airlines Have to Get on Board

A Word from ECPAT-USA’s Executive Director: Airlines Have to Get on Board

Delta employees give back to the homeless during the Hosea Feed the Hungry event on their Day On, Not A Day at the Delta Museum during the 2017 Human Trafficking conference on Wednesday February 1, 2017. ©2017 Chris Rank/ Rank Studios

Delta Air Lines is a long-time member of the Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct. But this week, in Atlanta, the company kicked off a new round of awareness and action to protect both adult and child trafficking victims. Read more from Delta here. There is now a company-wide anti-human trafficking steering committee with representatives from all the divisions.

Ed Bastian, CEO of Delta, gave a moving opening statement about the commitment of his company. He called it a movement, not a cause, and spoke passionately about the need for companies like his to do their part.

He is so right. Training of airline employees is crucial. As I was greeting Delta employees who were filing into the giant gathering room, within 5 minutes two people told me they had identified and reported cases of potential child trafficking. Two employees in five minutes! Every U.S. airline should be considering the same steps. Who knows how many more children would be saved.

 

As Director of ECPAT-USA I presented Ed with a Partner in Protection Plaque to thank the company for supporting our working. We can’t do our child protection work unless
we have support from the private sector, government, and individuals. Over 700 Delta employees were there, to learn that trafficking exists, to learn how to look for it, and get mobilized. It was a truly inspiring event.
– Carol Smolenski

ATL Calls Attention to Human Trafficking Awareness Month and Makes History as First U.S. Airport to Sign The Code

ATL Calls Attention to Human Trafficking Awareness Month and Makes History as First U.S. Airport to join ECPAT-USA and Sign The Code

ECPAT-USA is proud to announce a partnership with the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) – the first airport to sign The Tourism Child-Protection Code of Conduct (The Code).

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Become an Activist Against Child Trafficking

Become an Activist Against Child Trafficking

January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Before the month is over, do at least one of these things to make your mark against the trafficking of children:

Read up here on child trafficking so you are aware and informed. Tell your friends what you learned.
Write a letter to your member of Congress supporting laws that protect children. Here’s one about a law that calls on companies to take steps to let us all know how they are helping child trafficking victims.
Buy our fair-trade products that support women in Thailand who are at risk for being trafficked.
Sign up for one of our Advocacy Journeys to learn about child trafficking on the ground in other countries.
Sign up for the ECPAT-Athletes team in the New York City TD 5 Boro Bike Ride or for the TCS New York City Marathon by sending an email to athletes@ecpatusa.org to reserve your spot!
View our 20-minute video called What I Have Been Through is Not Who I Am. It has been used by law enforcement agencies and child protective service agencies across the country as a training tool.
Host a screening of the blockbuster film SOLD, starring Gillian Anderson and David Arquette, to raise awareness and benefit ECPAT-USA. Go to www.ecpatusa.org/SOLD to request your screening guide.

ECPAT-USA’s screening of SOLD unites Los Angeles to end child sex trafficking

ECPAT-USA’s screening of SOLD unites Los Angeles to end child sex trafficking
ECPAT-USA, will hold a special screening of SOLD the movie with guest appearances by David Arquette and breakout star Niyar Saikia at Regal Cinemas Live 14 on Tuesday, January 17, 2016. Tickets are onsale now.

Sponsored by leaders in the travel sector including HRS Global Hotel Solutions, The Parking Spot, Delta Air Lines, Marriott International, and the The Ritz-Carlton and JW Marriott Los Angeles LA LIVE, the event will align the Los Angeles community to put an end to child sex trafficking. Celebrities, government officials, the private sector, and the public will unite for the cause, raising funds and support for ECPAT-USA’s mission to create a world where no child is bought, sold, or used for sex.

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Private sector, NGO community, and government come together to celebrate ECPAT-USA’s 25th year fight for freedom

Private sector, NGO community, and government come together to celebrate ECPAT-USA’s 25th year fight for freedom

On Wednesday, November 16th, 2016 ECPAT-USA celebrated its 25th Anniversary of fighting for freedom. The soireé was held at the elegant Pace Gallery in New York City and was filled with over 200 generous friends of ECPAT-USA who support a world where no child is bought, sold, or used for sex. Thank you to everyone who donated to our evening – we well surpassed our fundraising goal!
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A new terrain: can landlords help protect children from sexual exploitation and trafficking?

A new terrain: can landlords help protect children from sexual exploitation and trafficking?

The travel industry has a unique and primary role to play in combatting and preventing child sexual exploitation. In the United States, children are targeted and strategically manipulated by pimps who use hotel rooms as venues for abuse and air travel has become the primary means to move children from city-to-city or across borders. ECPAT-USA has been bringing in more tourism companies on each year to sign The Code – such as Uber, Delta Air Lines, and Sonesta Resorts and Hotels. When a company joins The Code, they commit to taking six steps that will help protect children.

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ECPAT-USA PART OF COALITION OF ORGANIZATIONS ADVOCATING FOR FUNDING TO FIGHT TRAFFICKING

ECPAT-USA PART OF COALITION OF ORGANIZATIONS ADVOCATING FOR FUNDING TO FIGHT TRAFFICKING

Washington, D.C. (December 1, 2016)  – ECPAT-USA, along with four other co-signing organizations, sent a letter to Congress calling for the continuation of important funding that helps the U.S. government investigate claims of forced child labor.

The money allows for the U.S. Immigration and Custom Enforcement to be able to prevent and enforce federal laws associated with labor and sex trafficking of children, forced child labor, use of child soldiers and the sexual exploitation of children. The funding also creates programs that seek to prevent the illegal importing of goods that were created using forced or prison labor.

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