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Alabama Human Trafficking Summit planned for Friday

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

The Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force will host the 4th Annual Alabama Human Trafficking Summit on Friday at the Embassy Suites in Montgomery.

The Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force was created by Joint House Resolution 270 passed by the Alabama Legislature in April of 2014. The Task Force was charged with developing a plan to fight the growing specter of human trafficking, particularly of women, in and through Alabama.

The confirmed speakers include: Jack Williams, a state representative and chair of the Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force; Pamela Casey, district attorney, Blount County; Audrey Jordan, assistant attorney general for the State of Alabama; Darlene Hutchinson Biehl, the director of the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime; Lisa Thompson. the vice president of Research and Education, National Center on Sexual Exploitation; Carol Smolenski, the executive director of ECPAT-USA; Pat McCay, the chair of the North Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force; Carolyn Potter, the executive director of The WellHouse; Lynn Caffery, the executive director of Safe Harbor Youth; Jan Bell, the executive director of the Children’s Policy Council of Jefferson County; Sallye Longshore, the director of the Alabama Department of Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention; Greg Oliver, and the founder of Awaken Ministries.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, human trafficking is recognized as “a modern-day form of slavery” and “is tied with the illegal arms industry as the second largest criminal industry in the world today.” There are two major forms of human trafficking: labor or sex trafficking. Labor trafficking may include forced labor or debt bondage in which the victim continually works to pay off an undefined and seemingly endless debt.

The daylong event is open to the public. The registration fee is $75 per person and includes: continental breakfast, buffet lunch, afternoon snack, and program materials. CLE, CEU and APOST credits are available at no additional charge.

The U.S. Justice Department says that human trafficking is the second largest criminal enterprise in the world, trailing only the trafficking of narcotics and illegal drugs. In America, thousands of young girls and women are trapped in the bondage of the sex trade.

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The Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force was established in April 2014 and meets once a quarter at the Alabama State House.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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