FCAHT has thousands of volunteers and supporters who help us raise the awareness of human trafficking issues in communities throughout the state of Florida, across our country and internationally in countries like Central and South Americas. We appreciate each and every one of you because we know we can’t win this battle without you!
As you know, FCAHT is an International and Domestic Anti-Trafficking Agency that has been helping victims of human trafficking since it’s creation in 2004. FCAHT works closely with community service providers to provide rescued victims with emergency food and shelter, medical and psychological care and other services as needed to help these individuals restore their lives and their freedoms.

FCAHT provides training to law enforcement agencies, medical facilities, faith based, civil and community organizations to bring awareness and recognition to the signs and symptoms of Human Trafficking. We also work very closely with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Pinellas, Hillsborough and Pasco County Sheriff’s offices and local law enforcement agencies in investigations and prosecutions of traffickers as well as providing advocacy for the victims of human trafficking.
As a supporter of FCAHT, will you donate $10* to help us continue this important work with the same level of dedication and resolve? Your donations will go to helping victims of trafficking and to continue bringing awareness and training to others. Please help continue the battle to stop human trafficking by donating to Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking TODAY!
Sincerely,
The FCAHT Team
*  The first 100 supporters who donate $25 or more will receive a free “Become an Abolitionist” T-Shirt.

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Students in Columbia promote Fair Trade!

Kudos goes out to these high school and college interns. It’s good to see our youth become involved with the issue of labor/child trafficking. So many of us get so bogged down with the issue of sex trafficking that we tend to forget the other side of human trafficking. FIghting labor trafficking can be simple.  All that is needed is for the general public to buy fair trade products instead of products that were produced by slaves, not only in other countries but in the U. S as well.

To learn more about fair trade, visit the Fair Trade Federation website and learn about which companies are helping in the fight against labor trafficking.

Students promote fair trade and anti-slavery practices in Columbia 

 COLUMBIA — This summer, six Columbia high school students and eight college interns are participating in a student-led campaign to promote and expand the sale of fair trade goods in downtown Columbia. “In simple terms, fair trade is transparency of the product,” OptFair campaign director Nadege Uwase said. “From artist to vendor to customer, you know where the product is coming from.” In association with the Global Issues Leadership Development program, Central Missouri Stop Human Trafficking Coalition and MU Stop Traffic, the OptFair campaign is advocating for socially responsible business practices, including fair trade and buying goods closer to home. It is working with businesses that do anything to help end slavery anywhere in the production process. In fair trade, artisans and farmers receive a fair price for their products and work in safe environments. Forced labor, a type of human trafficking, is prohibited. Fair trade also aims to eliminate the middleman and deal directly with the producers of goods whenever possible. “The OptFair campaign is important because it’s going to make an impact locally in Columbia, as well as in communities abroad,” OptFair head marketing intern *Lisa Lovello said. It’s important for merchants and consumers to know the sources of their products, said Jessica Canfield, executive director of Mustard Seed Fair Trade. “Fair trade is a preventive measure when it comes to the issue of human trafficking,” she said. Rock Bridge students participating in OptFair come from the school’s Global Issues Club, which works with the Global Issues Leadership Development. In the club, students pick a topic about which they are interested in learning, then a country and an organization. This past year, the students chose to look at human trafficking, which the U.S. Department of State describes as forced labor, sexual exploitation and modern-day slavery. During the first semester, the students focused on human trafficking and sexual exploitation in the Democratic Republic of Congo and raised money for Heal Africa, which helps survivors of sexual violence. In the second semester, the emphasis was on human trafficking and fair trade in India. Then, the group worked to raise money for Free the Children, which works to free children from sweatshop labor and education them. “We’re here to advocate for people who can’t advocate for themselves,” Uwase said. There are four full fair-trade stores in Columbia: Mustard Seed Fair Trade and gifts shops at the MU Anthropology Museum, First Christian Church and Community United Methodist Church. Many coffee shops, such as Dunn Brothers, Kaldi’s, Lakota and Starbucks, offer fair trade coffee, Uwase said. The campaign members plan to use blogging and social media to communicate their message to the community. Uwase said they hope to hold a benefit concert toward the end of the summer and are considering working with **My Green Cities to create a map that would locate the fair trade stores in Columbia. Uwase said fair trade is important because it promotes freedom. “Freedom to me is not just about the shackles,” she said. “It’s about living in a way that respects and enhances other people’s freedom.”

Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking

I recently learned that a Maryland man was sentenced to 37 years for forcing a minor to engage in various commercial sex acts. Kudos to the prosecutors involved in this case. It is refreshing to see pimps getting arrested and locked up for exploiting our youth. The issue of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking is a serious issue and unfortunately too many people are in denial with the fact that there are numerous American children that are being sold for sex. This is something that doesn’t only happen in countries such as Thailand and Cambodia. It is happening right here in the land of the free. There is so much that needs to be done regarding the issue of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking. However, not much will be accomplished until the entire country admits that we have a problem….a very serious problem.  I invite you all to learn more about the issue of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking.  Please feel free to contact our office for additional information.

  

I wanted to leave you all with the official press release regarding this case. I am hoping to see more of these types of press releases in the near future.

 

For Immediate Release
July 19, 2010
United States Attorney’s Office
District of Maryland
Contact: (410) 209-4800
Montgomery County Man Sentenced to 37 Years in Prison in Sex Trafficking Conspiracy
Underage Girls Drugged and ThreatenedBALTIMORE, MARYLAND—U.S. District Judge Alexander Williams, Jr. sentenced Lloyd Mack Royal, III, a/k/a “Blyss,” “B,” and “Furious,” age 29, of Gaithersburg, Maryland, to 37 years in prison followed by 10 years supervised release for conspiracy to commit sex trafficking; sex trafficking of a minor; sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion; possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence; conspiracy to distribute drugs; and distribution of drugs to persons under 21, related to a scheme to prostitute three minor females. Judge Williams also ordered that after his release from prison Royal must register as a sex offender where he lives, works, or goes to school. Royal was convicted at trial on March 25, 2010.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland  Rod J. Rosenstein; Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez of the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division; Special Agent in Charge Richard A. McFeely of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Chief J. Thomas Manger of the Montgomery County Police Department.

“Maryland’s human trafficking task force follows a policy of zero tolerance for child prostitution,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “Anyone who pays for or profits from sex with children should understand that we are standing by to send them to federal prison.”

“The defendant violently preyed upon some of the most vulnerable members of our society,” said Assistant Attorney General Perez. “He sought out troubled young girls and through physical violence, drugs, guns, and lies, coerced them into prostitution for his own benefit. The Department of Justice will continue to vigorously prosecute these cases.”

According to testimony at the two week trial, from April to May 2007 Royal and his co-conspirators coerced a minor girl to engage in sex for pay. In addition, witnesses testified that Royal: coerced two additional minors to engage in sex, for which he was paid; threatened to harm the girls and their families; struck the girls; and held one of the girls at gun point. In order to assert his authority over the girls, Royal would forbid them from contacting certain individuals and forced them to kiss his pinky ring. Royal drove the girls to hotels in Gaithersburg, Maryland, or caused them to be transported from Maryland to the District of Columbia, to have them engage in sex.

On several occasions, testimony showed that Royal gave the girls illegal drugs before forcing them to engage in sex with him in order to test the girls’ sexual aptitude. Royal and his co-defendants provided the girls with cocaine, “dippers” or “ciga-wets” (cigarettes dipped in phencyclidine liquid known as PCP), marijuana and alcohol before coercing them to engage in sex with customers, and sometimes sold cocaine to customers. Witnesses testified that Royal gave the girls instructions on pricing for different sexual acts and instructed the girls to lie about their ages.

Paul Raymond Green, a/k/a “PJ,” age 25, of Washington, D.C., and Angela Samantha Bentolila, age 27, were sentenced to 52 months and 15 months in prison, respectively, for their roles in the sex trafficking conspiracy.

The case was investigated by the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force formed in 2007 to discover and rescue victims of human trafficking while identifying and prosecuting offenders. Members include federal, state, and local law enforcement, as well as victim service providers and local community members. For more information about the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, please visit http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/md/Human-Trafficking/index.html.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein and Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez commended former Assistant United States Attorney Solette A. Magnelli and Trial Attorney James Felte, of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit, who prosecuted the case.

Haiti: 6 months after the Earthquake

I can’t believe 6 months have already passed since the devastating earthquake rocked Port Au Prince. After the earthquake occurred, I wrote an article regarding my concerns with the potential for human trafficking in Haiti. I wanted to go ahead and share this article with you all again. This can serve as a reminder to us all on how human trafficking can thrive after a natural diaster.

The Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking Raises concerns over allegations of potential Human Trafficking in Haiti.
The Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking raises awareness on the issue of Human Trafficking here in the State of Florida. However, in the aftermath of the horrific earthquakes in Haiti, the focus must shift to the human tragedies unfolding there right
now. Human trafficking tends to increase after any type of a natural disaster where many children are left homeless and orphaned. Many families, too, are left in dire conditions and become vulnerable targets for traffickers. UNICEF is reporting that thousands of
children in Haiti are being trafficked out of the country, including 15 children taken right out of hospitals there.
At this time, there are numerous international groups involved in relief efforts, bringing supplies into the country by air and across the border from the Dominican Republic.
Given so much chaos, it has suddenly become very easy for traffickers to infiltrate the country concealed among the many hundreds of foreign groups and organizations going there to render assistance and lure or abduct innocent lives into the dark world of human
trafficking. Due to the immense challenges of identifying the living and the dead and locating the misplaced, there is practically no way at present to account for the citizens of Haiti. There is also little control over criminality. This makes abductions very easy to commit and helps traffickers conceal their activities and hide the identities of victims,
including those being kidnapped and sold as hosts for the black market in organ trafficking.
The Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking supports Save the Children and World Vision in calling for a halt to adoptions currently taking place in Haiti. The Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking understands that there are many people with good
intentions who want to provide a safe and stable home for so many Haitian children who are homeless. However, the lack of monitoring and control over adoptions in Haiti at this time makes it too difficult to discern who is adopting a child out of the goodness of their
heart and who is adopting this child due to the amount of money this child is worth on the black market. There is also evidence that some of the orphanages found in Haiti today are connected to human traffickers waiting to make a profit out of innocent children.
The issue of Human Trafficking is not new to the country of Haiti. Most of the child slaves are referred to as resteveks. This has been a long-standing issue and violation of Haitian children’s human rights. Statistics show that Haiti’s population currently consists of poor youth, with 45 percent of the population being under 15 years of age. Before the
earthquake, more than 300,000 children were already in forced labor in Haiti and that number will only increase.
As we continue to assist Haiti in sending additional aid to restore and rebuild the country, we also need to exercise much greater vigilance in protecting the most vulnerable population: Haiti’s children. Here in Florida, our community needs to become more
proactive and consistent in monitoring adoption placements as we see can anticipate an increase in the number of Haitian human trafficking victims entering the state The Florida Coalition Against Human Trafficking would like to ask President Barack
Obama and Secretary of State Hilary Clinton to establish an International Task Force with organizations such as UNICEF, OAS, International Justice Mission, EPCAT, Save
the Children, Clinton Foundation, OIM, World Vision, Secretary of Health and Human Services, US Attorney General, Secretary Janet Napolitano, Polaris Project, Ricky Martin Foundation, FCAHT, The Salvation Army and a government representative from Haiti to
ensure that all children in Haiti are reunited with their surviving families, accountability and safe shelter to protect them from becoming victims of sexual and labor exploitation.

A New FCAHT Monthly Event Begins in July

Announcing a fun and delicious fundraising event that will begin the first week of July from the 5th through the 9th. This event will repeat each month with the first full week (M-F) of each month to be named “FCAHT Jamba Juice Week”.     

The first full week of each month (M-F), take your $4 to Jamba Juice, order a 16 oz. drink in one of the delicious flavors specially made for our FCAHT donors and $1 of your purchase will go directly to help FCAHT trafficking victims. Please print and take a flyer with  you when enjoying your Jamba Juice. What a great way to give to someone else while giving yourself a refreshing and fruity drink!     

A huge thanks goes out to Jamba Juice for their wonderful work in helping FCAHT help the victims of Human Trafficking in Florida!   

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