Last week I was in Washington DC where I met with a number of people about child trafficking and what The Born2Fly Project is doing to stop it.
Here are some quick quotes from some of them:
"The whole issue of human trafficking is not taken seriously by governments. They ratify the treaties but don't follow through and do anything. The US is the only country with an ambassador heading their anti-trafficking office. More countries need to do that."
-- Baroness Mary Goudie, abolitionist and member of the House of Lords
"Many countries have a very 1880s view of what human trafficking is. For them it simply means 'moving prostitutes across borders.' The US and UK focus on the exploitation nature of human trafficking. You can't just relegate women to be prostitutes. These women are exploited."
-- Ambassador Luis CdeBaca, director, Office to Monitor and Combat Human Trafficking, US State Department
"Corporations must recognize there is a real vulnerability if they don't recognize these issues. They can be trailblazers on these issues."
-- Mark Lagon, former ambassador-at-large with the Office to Monitor and Combat Human Trafficking, US State Department; now consultant to corporations
"The exemplar of this is Avon [and their foundation to stop domestic and gender violence]. We must build a message that philanthropic goals are going to shape a corporation's name, brand, and profits. It's doing well by doing good."
-- Paula Stern, former chairwoman of the International Trade Commission
I also met with Amy O'Neill Richard at the State Department, one of the authors of the annual Trafficking in Persons Report; Julie Stricker at the State Department, who works with international programs fighting human trafficking; and Dr. Laura Lederer, former head of the Office to Monitor and Combat Human Trafficking and now director of Global Centurion, which works to stop the demand side of trafficking.
Laura invited Born to Fly to join Triple S Network (Stop Sex Slavery), a coalition of 100 anti-trafficking organizations. (We accepted, of course!)
I've had some follow-up conversations with Baroness Goudie, and she'll be guest-posting on this blog (and graciously invited me to write for hers).
"We must keep writing articles and blogging about human trafficking," she stressed. "That is the place to make changes."
Amen. Thank you for reading this blog and wanting to make changes.