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Community members impacted by or concerned with rising rates of sex and labor trafficking in the Napa Valley are encouraged to attend a anti-trafficking training program on Thursday, October 3rd, from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm.

Organized Soroptimist International of St. Helena and Soroptimist St. Helena Sunrise, the 3 hour program will offer some light snacks followed by a guest speaker and a panel discussion on  identifying and reporting incidents of human trafficking within the community.

Specific interest groups encouraged to attend the seminar include police and fire departments, teachers, counselors, foster parents, lawyers, social workers, therapists, nurses, doctors, city and county officials. All community members are encouraged to attend as this crime is happening in our backyard.

 

Human trafficking, as defined by the U.S. Department of State, is a form of “modern slavery” where human beings—children and adults alike—are trafficked, usually through force, fraud or coercion, for sex and/or labor or both. Behind guns and drugs, human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal industries in the world, including the United States.  According to statistics collected from the National Human Trafficking Hotline run by Polaris and quoted by the State of California Department of Justice, California led the nation in reported incidents of human trafficking in 2018. Within California, the North Bay, including the Napa Valley, is seeing some of the highest rates of trafficking in the state, local officials report.

 

A nationwide scourge, human trafficking is projected to surpass the illegal sale of arms and drugs in the United States within the next year or two. To reverse this trend, law enforcement organizations like NSIB are teaming up with community activists and non-government organizations such as Soroptimist International to train the public to combat human trafficking. Napa County has had 8 investigations of Human Trafficking from January 2019- August 2019, basically one a month. This has been the yearly trend since they started proactively investigating Human Trafficking since 2016.

Napa County has not had a single cooperative survivor during that time. This is not surprising – rather, because of the dynamics of human trafficking, survivors often are angry that we are prosecuting their boyfriends/fiancées and refuse to cooperate with the prosecution.

 

Every case that has been sent to the Napa County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution has resulted in a prison sentence.

 

When- Thursday, October 3, 2019 5:30 PM- 8:30 PM

Where- St. Helena High School Preforming Arts Center

Who- Guest Speakers and Panel Speakers to include:

Allison Haley, Napa County District Attorney

Napa Special Investigations Bureau

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