STAT! Soroptimist Together Against Trafficking
STOP SEX TRAFFICKING Human rights groups estimate that anywhere from 12 to 27 million people are currently living as sexual slaves, and each year between 800,000 and 900,000 people are trafficked across international borders for sexual slavery. An estimated 75% are trafficked into the commercial sex industry, and of this number 80% are women and girls. This means that millions of women and girls are currently living as sex slaves worldwide, terrorized and tortured by their captors until they lose all will to resist. This is an area where public support is growing rapidly in San Diego, and SISD is heavily involved going forward.
SOROPTIMIST INTERNATIONAL FOCUS ON TRAFFICKING
The small country of Moldova, located in East Asia between Rumania and The Ukraine, is one of the most trafficked countries in the world. To educate the women and girls of Moldova on the ruses used to entice girls and women into trafficking, money from the annual Soroptimist International President's Appeal in 2010 was provided to this country. Each December 10th on Human Rights Day, our International SI President in the UK selects a worldwide project that provides direct assistance to women and/or girls judged to be in extreme need. SISD members worldwide respond by writing personal checks to support this mission. Trafficking will be high on the list of problems that SI will continue to address.
STAT! Public Event On Trafficking
On January 11th, 2012, Sex Trafficking Awareness Day, STAT! sponsored a public event at Thomas Jefferson School of Law in downtown San Diego. This included a showing of the documentary film INDOCTRINATED: THE GROOMING OF OUR CHILDREN FOR PROSTITUTION, which was produced by San Diego County Board of Education. In part the film shows how a 12 year old in our city was lured into prostitution, and the report from a young girl who escaped the system. This was followed by experts in the field, who reminded attendees that trafficking is growing in San Diego County. The keynote speaker this year was Dr. Susan Tiefenbrun, Professor of Law at Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Internationally recognized as an expert in the field of trafficking, Susan, who speaks 10 languages, presents worldwide on this topic. She has written extensively on human trafficking as a form of contemporary slavery. Both the film and our experts took pains to both show and tell how easily naieve young girls are being recruited into this life. The experts are in total agreement that community education is the only real weapon to counter this growing problem. The documentary and presentations also left no doubt about the involvement of the Mafia and big crime in wooing young girls into prostitution with gifts and attention.
STAT! ROOM FOR TRAFFICKING VICTIMS.
A recent STAT! project was to decorate the Trafficking Interview Room at the San Diego Police Department. Anyone who has been in a public government room knows how bare it is: gray walls and carpet are enough to remind you. STAT! Clubs donated time, talent and funds for the redecoration. STAT! continues to address the needs of local victims, and to educate parents, teens and the public about the risks of human trafficking, pimping and sexual slavery. STAT! is represented on the San Diego Regional Advisory Council on Human Trafficking.