Awareness Against Human Trafficking

By Sr. Celeste Wobeter, ND

Today is World Day of Prayer and Awareness Against Human Trafficking.

COVID has impacted the work of the Coalition in our training plans as some hotels closed and/or cut staff because of lack of business. Later as staff numbers increased the trainers were able to do trainings virtually, which is not quite as effective as face-to-face presentations. Meanwhile we updated our training and are beginning to use this new model.

A new direction in our training is to train employees in other business settings. We recently did a Pilot Training with First National Bank of Omaha which was received very well. The participants offered excellent feedback to enhance our training. Their enthusiasm to continue to partner with our Coalition is most affirming. They are including information about human trafficking on their internal web page with a link to the Coalition website. Further training for other employees will be set up in the coming months. They are also willing to provide contacts for other financial institutions.

  • We are providing a second Pilot Training with Centris Federal Credit Union in the near future to get further feedback on our training before we move full-force forward.
  • One of our Board members is a Security Manager and is developing a training specific for security personnel which includes human trafficking information as well.

COVID slowed the Coalition in their trainings. Unfortunately, trafficking did not stop!

  • During COVID many people experienced heightened vulnerabilities due to pandemic-related lock downs, stay at home orders, job loss and increased time online.
  • Worldwide there are approximately 40.3 million victims of human trafficking. Of these 25 million are victims of labor and/or sex trafficking, 15 million are trapped in forced marriages. Nearly 30% of all victims are men and boys and 1 in 4 victims are children.