Shared Hope International http://sharedhope.org Leading a worldwide effort to eradicate sexual slavery...one life at a time Sun, 25 Jan 2015 23:44:51 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1 Lifesize Dollbox Exposes Superbowl Fans to Sex Trafficking http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/25/lifesize-dollbox-exposes-superbowl-fans-sex-trafficking/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/25/lifesize-dollbox-exposes-superbowl-fans-sex-trafficking/#respond Sun, 25 Jan 2015 23:44:51 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10670 Shared Hope International brings sex trafficking awareness campaign to Phoenix to highlight issue during Super Bowl WASHINGTON, D.C., Shared Hope International will erect a seven-foot tall pink doll box with the message “Children Aren’t Playthings” at Arizona State University, Grand Canyon University, Glendale Community College, and downtown Phoenix to raise awareness of child sex trafficking, specifically [...]

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Shared Hope International brings sex trafficking awareness campaign to Phoenix to highlight issue during Super Bowl

WASHINGTON, D.C., Shared Hope International will erect a seven-foot tall pink doll box with the message “Children Aren’t
Playthings” at Arizona State University, Grand Canyon University, Glendale Community College, and downtown Phoenix to raise
awareness of child sex trafficking, specifically during the Super Bowl.

Child sex trafficking affects an estimated 100,000 American children each year. Recent efforts by Arizona law enforcement, leaders
and advocacy groups have targeted the anticipated increase in sex trafficking activities during the Super Bowl. The “Children Aren’t
Playthings” doll box campaign is intended to challenge the dangerous objectification of prostituted individuals, including victims of
child sex trafficking. The exhibit was created by Brunner, a creative agency in Atlanta, to offer a stark reminder that despite a
trafficker’s careful “packaging” of child trafficking victims for sale, they are children.

On Saturday, Shared Hope’s exhibit will be held in conjuncture with Streetlight USA, a local organization aimed at stopping child sex
trafficking, and the Scarlet Cord, an art installation by Pamela Alderman.

Times and Locations:

1.20.15_Landing_Page_PhotoMonday, January 26 | 10:00 – 3:00
Arizona State University – Tempe Campus – Memorial Union
301 E. Orange Mall
Tempe, AZ 85281

Tuesday, January 27 | 10:00 – 3:00
Arizona State University – Phoenix Downtown Campus – Taylor Mall
Located on E. Taylor Street and Central Ave.

Wednesday, January 28 | 11:00 – 4:00
Arizona State University – Tempe Campus – Hayden Lawn
300 E. Orange Mall
Tempe, AZ 85281

Thursday, January 29 | 9:00 – 1:00
Glendale Community College
6000 W Olive Ave, Glendale, AZ 85302

Friday, January 30 | 10:00 – 3:00
Grand Canyon University
3300 West Camelback Road
Phoenix, AZ 85017

Saturday, January 31 | 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
(in coordination with the Scarlet Cord and Streetlight USA)
813 N. 1st Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

Media Contact:
Taryn Offenbacher
Director of Communications, Shared Hope International
602-818-3955 | taryn@sharedhope.org

Shared Hope International, founded in 1998 by Congresswoman Linda Smith, is an anti-trafficking organization focusing on
prevention, restoration and justice for victims of sex trafficking. Access media resources

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Human Trafficking Awareness Month: Take Action This January http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/23/human-trafficking-awareness-month-take-action/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/23/human-trafficking-awareness-month-take-action/#respond Fri, 23 Jan 2015 20:57:48 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10625 The post Human Trafficking Awareness Month: Take Action This January appeared first on Shared Hope International.

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Human Trafficking Awareness Month

Millions Being Trafficked

As you read this, millions of women, men and children around the world are subject to the harsh reality of being trafficked. Awareness of human trafficking has gathered momentum in recent years and is now one of the key issues being addressed by governmental bodies both internationally and in the United States. In November, the Walk Free Foundation estimated that globally nearly 36 million people live as slaves, have been trafficked into brothels, or forced to work for little or no pay as victims of debt bondage or servitude by birth (2014 Global Slavery Index Report); and recently President Barack Obama declared January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month.

Searching for Answers

A simple search for “human trafficking” reveals the extent to which the issue has spread and the various ways it is being address. Pope Francis recently urged people of all faiths and cultures to unite to put an end to slavery and human trafficking in a speech in the Philippines: “all of us are called [by God] to be free, all are called to be sons and daughters, and each, according to his or her own responsibilities, is called to combat modern forms of enslavement. From every people, culture and religion, let us join our forces.”

I'm ready

Ready to stand up and take action?

A Problem Everywhere

Human trafficking is a major problem and it helps to define what exactly it is; the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Act defines human trafficking as:

A. The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for the purpose of a commercial sex act where such an act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained 18 years of age, or

B. The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.”

Human trafficking can take many forms, such as domestic servitude; factory labor that resembles prisons; farm work by migrants. Recently war has created a new market for traffickers to exploit Syrians refugees feeling the war that has torn apart their country – in many cases these migrants pay a fee to board a ship and are at the whim of their smugglers; horrifically, many are being abandoned at sea and left for dead.

Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking (DMST)

Domestic minor sex trafficking occurs when U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident minors (under the age of 18) are commercially sexually exploited. Children can be commercially sexually exploited through prostitution, pornography, and/or erotic entertainment.

The age of the victim is the critical issue — there is no requirement to prove force, fraud, or coercion was used to secure the victim’s actions. The law recognizes the effect of psychological manipulation by the trafficker, as well as the effect of threat of harm which traffickers/pimps use to maintain control over their young victims.

Educate, Take Action

Shared Hope is working hard to address the issue of human trafficking and is a leader in combating one of the most vehement forms: domestic minor sex trafficking.  Shared Hope’s Human Trafficking Awareness Month page now provides ample opportunities to get involved in the fight against human trafficking. Take a stand and join the fight to end trafficking today.

Warning signs

Some signs that an individual is being trafficked:

  • Signs of physical abuse such as burn marks, bruises or cuts
  • Unexplained absences from class
  • Less appropriately dressed than before
  • Sexualized behavior
  • Overly tired in class
  • Withdrawn, depressed, distracted or checked out
  • Brags about making or having lots of money
  • Displays expensive clothes, accessories or shoes
  • New tattoo (tattoos are often used by pimps as a way to brand victims. Tattoos of a name, symbol of money or barcode could indicate trafficking)
  • Older boyfriend or new friends with a different lifestyle
  • Talks about wild parties or invites other students to attend parties
  • Shows signs of gang affiliation? (ie: a preference for specific colors, notebook doodles of gang symbols, etc.)

TAKE ACTION

Visit Shared Hope’s Human Trafficking Awareness Month Take Action page.

Take Action Now

Which countries have the worst record for human trafficking?

trafficking around the worldClick here to view interactive map 

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House Judiciary to Address Key Human Trafficking Bills http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/20/house-judiciary-address-key-human-trafficking-bills/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/20/house-judiciary-address-key-human-trafficking-bills/#respond Tue, 20 Jan 2015 22:06:29 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10566 The post House Judiciary to Address Key Human Trafficking Bills appeared first on Shared Hope International.

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The House Judiciary Committee has a markup scheduled for this Wednesday at 10:30am at 2141 Rayburn House Office Building on key human trafficking bills supported by Shared Hope.

All of these bills passed the House in the 113th Congress and support is needed to ensure passage again.

We will be tweeting and posting updates as it happens so be sure to visit Shared Hope social media pages and share/retweet!

Links:

Schedule for Jan. 21 at 10:30am:

  • H.R. 181, the “Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015” (Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas)
  • H.R. 350, the Human Trafficking Prevention, Intervention, and Recovery Act (Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D.)
  • H.R. 159, the “Stop Exploitation Through Trafficking Act of 2015” (Rep. Erik Paulsen, R-Minn.)
  • H.R. 285, the Stop Advertising Victims of Exploitation (SAVE) Act (Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo.)

House Judiciary Committee Logo

Take Action

H.R. 350

Ask your Representative to co-sponsor H.R. 350, Human Trafficking Prevention, Intervention, and Recovery Act of 2015!

Take Action

State Legislation

View state bills related to human trafficking:

Livestream of House Judiciary Meeting (begins 10:30am)

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Mission14 Human Trafficking Awareness Month Launch http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/20/mission14-human-trafficking-awareness-month-launch/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/20/mission14-human-trafficking-awareness-month-launch/#respond Tue, 20 Jan 2015 19:37:58 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10568 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Weinberg Harris & Associates kbowers@weinbergharris.com (o) 410.243.1333 x 231 (c) 443.956.9422 BREAKING RECORDS AND RAISING AWARENESS, MISSION 14 FIGHTS HUMAN TRAFFICKING BY CLIMBING SIX OF THE WORLD’S HIGHEST MOUNTAINS –Non-Profit Group Takes Up the Fight Against Modern-Day Slavery by Attempting a Massive Challenge– BALTIMORE, MD (January 20, 2015) – There are more [...]

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Mission 14 logoWeinberg Harris & Associates
kbowers@weinbergharris.com
(o) 410.243.1333 x 231
(c) 443.956.9422

BREAKING RECORDS AND RAISING AWARENESS, MISSION 14 FIGHTS HUMAN TRAFFICKING BY CLIMBING SIX OF THE WORLD’S HIGHEST MOUNTAINS

Non-Profit Group Takes Up the Fight Against Modern-Day Slavery by Attempting a Massive Challenge–

BALTIMORE, MD (January 20, 2015) – There are more people in slavery today than at any point in human history.[1] It is estimated that 35.8 million people worldwide are victims of human trafficking, and that 1 in 5 of those enslaved are children.[2] Mission 14®, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit, seeks to bring global awareness to the cruelties of human trafficking and its worst form – the trafficking of children. This atrocity can only be tackled by a monumental action, and Mission 14 is prepared to do just that by attempting to break a mountain climbing world record in 2015.

Starting in March 2015, Mission 14 Founder and CEO Nick Cienski, an expert mountaineer, will attempt to summit six (6) of the world’s highest mountains (8,000 meters or more) in a single calendar year. The current record is five summits in one year. Called the 6 Summits Challenge, the expedition will reach a global audience, allowing Mission 14 to use that platform to create worldwide awareness for the second largest criminal enterprise in the world[3] – human trafficking. With the general public largely unaware or uneducated on the vast extent of this problem, Mission 14 is working to become a resource portal for information and fundraising organization for direct  service partners who fight human trafficking every day.

President Barack Obama has officially proclaimed January 2015 as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, culminating in the annual celebration of National Freedom Day on February 1. In light of the President’s dedication to “build a world where our people and our children are not for sale,” Mission 14 is officially launching their endeavors to inspire an army of difference makers to join the global movement to eradicate human trafficking.

“Our goal is to inspire everyone to get educated on the issue of modern-day slavery and join us in this fight for fundamental human rights,” said Nick Cienski, Founder and CEO, Mission 14.

“Climbing mountains is what I know and raising awareness for human trafficking is what I am called to do, so I created a new and engaging way to accomplish this mission,” Cienski continues. “Breaking this world record will attract significant media attention. While I have that spotlight, Mission 14 can increase awareness of the extent and horrors of human trafficking. Make no mistake, slavery exists today and it’s right in our own backyard.”

The 6 Summits Challenge will begin in Nepal in early April 2015 by climbing Lhotse, the world’s 4th highest peak and summiting in early May, followed by Mt. Everest in mid- May, and then Makalu, the world’s 5th highest mountain at the end of May. This fall, the team will summit Manaslu, Cho Oyo, and Shishapangma, the world’s 8th, 6th, and 14th highest peaks, respectively.

Organizational Leader Russell Brice, world-renowned mountaineer, trek guide, and founder of the Himalayan Experience, will head the massive logistics and organizational requirements for the 6 Summits Challenge. Russell holds the world record for fastest single, solo ascent without oxygen of Cho Oyo and Ama Dablam. The head Sherpa for the expedition is Phurba Tashi, who has not only summited Mount Everest 21 times, but also holds the record for the most total ascents of the world’s 8,000 meter mountains, summiting 35 times, more than anyone in the world. Sandi Cienski, Nick’s wife and Director of Operations for Mission 14, will provide ground support at all base camps by assisting with social media and photography.

Along with the 6 Summits Challenge, Mission 14 will launch the 70,000 Foot Challenge, a fundraising platform that encourages donors to pledge at least a penny for every foot climbed by Nick and his team. All donations made to the 70,000 Foot Challenge will be given directly to the organization’s non-profit partners to assist in their direct-service efforts. The 6 Summits Challenge is funded solely by corporate sponsors and none of the donations made by the general public will be used for any part of the expedition.

Mission 14 is based in Baltimore, Maryland, a state where, according to the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, there have been 200 identified victims of trafficking since January 2013. Locally, Mission 14 partners with organizations such as Araminta Freedom Initiative, which works to prevent the sexual exploitation of minors, and Shared Hope International, which works to coordinate a national U.S. network of protection to improve the response to victims of trafficking. On an international level, Mission 14 is partnered with Catholic Relief Services, which eases suffering and provides assistance to approximately 100 million people in need across 93 countries, Nicaragua-based ORPHANetwork, works to rescue abandoned, abused, and orphaned children, Tiny Hands International, which operates 23 border stations on the Nepal-India border to rescue young girls and boys from being trafficked, and International Justice Mission, which rescues victims of violence, brings criminals to justice, restores survivors, and strengthens justice systems.

“Shared Hope International is honored to partner with Mission 14 in this innovative attempt to raise awareness about human trafficking, and funds to help make it history,” states Nancy Winston, Senior Director of Shared Hope International. “In the area of sex trafficking where we work, we see the desperate need to raise awareness, educate the public, particularly men, and become part of the solution by being brave and standing up for not just what’s right, but what’s fundamentally decent. We hope that following Nick and his team in their mission will be a reminder to not only defend the defenseless but to defend our spirit as human beings.”

“Human trafficking is happening right here in our home towns, our neighborhoods and our backyards,” says Alicia McDowell, Executive Director of Araminta Freedom Initiative, a group working to end human trafficking in the Baltimore, Maryland region. “This is a serious and growing problem that needs a big, global platform. That is what is so wonderful about Mission 14 – they will allow for a much wider audience to learn about the horrors of these crimes and most importantly, see how even one person can really make a difference.”

“Our work takes us to the poorest of the poor in many countries around the world where we see the faces impacted by human trafficking every day,” says Dr. Carolyn Woo, President & CEO of Catholic Relief Services. “We hope that the collaboration with Mission 14 on this exciting project will generate much-needed international awareness about this issue.”

Mission 14®, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit founded in 2011, was created to discover new and engaging ways to raise awareness, engage difference makers, and to financially resource existing best-in-class direct-service non-profit organizations dedicated to fighting human trafficking with a focus on the trafficking of children.

Sources

  1. Kevin Bales, author of Disposable People
  2. Walk Free Foundation’s 2014 Global Slavery Index.
  3. U.S. State Department‘s 2014 Trafficking in Persons Report

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A movement to restore human dignity; this MLK holiday, the work continues to end modern day slavery http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/19/a-movement-to-restore-human-dignity-this-mlk-holiday/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/19/a-movement-to-restore-human-dignity-this-mlk-holiday/#respond Mon, 19 Jan 2015 22:55:09 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10503 In recalling today the incredible work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. we are also reminded of both how far we have come and how far we have to go in the fight to end oppression and restore human dignity to the millions who still suffer under injustice and slavery. “Our lives begin to end [...]

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MLK Thinking

In recalling today the incredible work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. we are also reminded of both how far we have come and how far we have to go in the fight to end oppression and restore human dignity to the millions who still suffer under injustice and slavery.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

These words from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. are powerful as we commemorate the life and work of a man who gave his life for justice.

There is a common belief that slavery no longer exists; unfortunately, that is simply not the case. The practice of buying and selling human beings is still intact, just in new forms. Today as you read this, women and children are bought and sold as objects in the sex trade to fulfill grown men’s fantasies. Just like any market, sex trafficking takes various forms and is not consistently defined as depraved or wrong by every individual or nation; but as Nickloas Kristof has proffered, “whatever one thinks of legalizing sexual transactions among adults, we should all be able to agree that children shouldn’t be peddled like pizzas.”

Despite the many heroic efforts by activists, judges, law enforcement, case workers, community groups and others, domestic minor sex trafficking is still rampant in the United States. Of the many ills and underlying acts of depravity in the news today, the scourge of domestic minor sex trafficking rises to the top as a prime example of why we cannot rest; as Dr. King Jr. imparted years ago, “until all are free, none of us are free.” It is with this same principle that Shared Hope is working on the crucial goals of preventing trafficking, restoring hope to victims and finally bringing justice to those who do harm.

Similar to how Dr. King Jr. encouraged activists to take greater and greater action in an effort to spark legislative and social reforms related to civil rights in the 1960s. Today, Shared Hope and others are aiming for similar energy to be put toward bringing greater justice and restoration for those who have been wronged by a developing legal system which  allows buyers of sex with children walk free and victims of trafficking to fend for themselves. This MLK day join in us celebrating the efforts of all those who have and continue to fight for equality and justice in this country.

Here are ways to take action on the MLK holiday and continue the work of a man who stood for equality and justice in face of cruelty, hatred and systemic oppression.

Legislative Action:

Campaigns:

Join the fight and help put an end to trafficking in the United States, and as you do remember this work requires all of us and that real change takes collective action; in the words of MLK, “We cannot walk alone.”

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Demand Justice at Super Bowl XLIX http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/12/demand-justice-super-bowl-xlix/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/12/demand-justice-super-bowl-xlix/#respond Mon, 12 Jan 2015 22:31:25 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10290 The post Demand Justice at Super Bowl XLIX appeared first on Shared Hope International.

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“Children Aren’t Playthings” Dollbox on Display in Arizona

View Shared Hope International’s domestic minor sex trafficking awareness Dollbox on the following dates in the following locations:

Monday, Jan 26
10:00 – 3:00
Arizona State University – Tempe Campus – Memorial Union

Tuesday, Jan 27
10:00 – 3:00
Arizona State University – Phoenix Downtown Campus – Taylor Mall

Wednesday, Jan 28
11:00 – 4:00
Arizona State University – Tempe Campus – Hayden lawn

Thursday, Jan 29
Morning – Time TBC
Glendale Community College

Saturday, Jan 31 (in coordination w/ the Scarlet Cord and Streetlight USA)
10:00 – 9:00
813 N. 1st Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004

Help end domestic minor sex trafficking at Super Bowl XLIX in Arizona

Recently we posted a letter and petition on demandingjustice.org encouraging the 15 County Attorney’s Offices in Arizona to ensure prosecutions of buyers of sex with children are made a priority. The goal of the petition is to bring a unified front to enforce zero tolerance for child sex trafficking.

Let’s tell buyers, if they exploit a child in Arizona, they better plan to stay awhile – in jail! Sign the petition today and use your name to encourage the authorities to get tough on the scourge of trafficking in Arizona and elsewhere. The nation is watching.

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Arizona’s Not Buying It

The Arizona’s Not Buying It campaign brings together some of Arizona’s most recognized voices to commit to fighting child sex trafficking, including: Kurt Warner (NFL retired, Arizona Cardinals); Jason Rowley (President, Phoenix Suns); Derrick hall (President and CEO, Arizona Diamondbacks).  In partnership with Shared Hope International, the #AZnotbuyingit campaign aims to raise awareness of sex trafficking and support efforts to combat demand.

Click here to learn more about the Arizona Not Buying It Campaign.

Learn More

Shared Hope International has been a leader in Arizona anti-trafficking efforts since 2009. Shared Hope advocates for stronger laws by hosting the 2011 SHE! Counts Advocacy Day in partnership with Arizona Foundation for Women; providing an annual analysis of Arizona state laws on domestic minor sex trafficking and offering practical recommendations through the national Protected Innocence Challenge; testifying at the Governor’s Human Trafficking Task Force; and documenting cases of buyers of sex acts with minors through the Demanding Justice Project to inform policy opportunities. Shared Hope hosts and presents at numerous trainings in Arizona, equipping law enforcement, prosecutors, judges, child welfare and community members to effectively identify and respond to the crime.

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“Human Trafficking: What You Need to Know”: Focus on the Family’s Free Radio Program http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/05/focus-on-the-familys-free-radio-program-human-trafficking-need-know/ http://sharedhope.org/2015/01/05/focus-on-the-familys-free-radio-program-human-trafficking-need-know/#respond Mon, 05 Jan 2015 21:24:31 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10232 We are happy to announce that Shared Hope’s two-day Focus on the Family audio broadcast entitled “Human Trafficking: What You Need to Know” is airing on Thursday, Jan. 8th and Friday, Jan 9th, 2015! The streaming audio of this broadcast appears on Focus on the Family’s Broadcast page (www.focusonthefamily.com/radio). On the broadcast page, look for the Focus “Station [...]

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We are happy to announce that Shared Hope’s two-day Focus on the Family audio broadcast entitled “Human Trafficking: What You Need to Know” is airing on Thursday, Jan. 8th and Friday, Jan 9th, 2015!

The streaming audio of this broadcast appears on Focus on the Family’s Broadcast page (www.focusonthefamily.com/radio). On the broadcast page, look for the Focus “Station Finder” to find stations that carry the program in your area. In addition, a downloadable podcast will be available on iTunes (just search for Focus on the Family Daily Broadcast or click here).

You can listen to last year’s program (Exposing the Dark World of Human Trafficking Parts I & II) here and listen to former US Congresswoman and Founder and CEO of Shared Hope International Linda Smith discuss the alarming prevalence of modern-day human trafficking, what is being done domestically to protect victims, and how parents and youth leaders can teach the warning signs to their children.

Last year’s radio broadcast is available to be ordered via a donation. You can purchase it here.

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How One Man Used Marketing to Bring Buyers to Justice – And Why He’s Not So Different From You… http://sharedhope.org/2014/12/12/one-man-used-marketing-bring-buyers-justice-hes-not-different/ http://sharedhope.org/2014/12/12/one-man-used-marketing-bring-buyers-justice-hes-not-different/#comments Fri, 12 Dec 2014 22:16:52 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=10062 Jason Kowal, Principal and Co-Founder of Global Thinking had a good reason to get involved. Two daughters. In the spring of 2014, Shared Hope contacted Jason and his team about helping launch the Demanding Justice Project campaign website, a site that serves to expose buyers convicted of purchasing sex with minors. At the conclusion of [...]

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Jason Kowal, Principal and Co-Founder of Global Thinking had a good reason to get involved. Two daughters.

In the spring of 2014, Shared Hope contacted Jason and his team about helping launch the Demanding Justice Project campaign website, a site that serves to expose buyers convicted of purchasing sex with minors. At the conclusion of the call, we determined our vision might be just too large for our budget. In less than 24 hours, Jason’s team contacted us and said they were not only willing, but wanted, to take on the project.

Check out how this marketing expert put his skills and resources to work to fight demand.

DJ_Team2

Pictured (left to right) – Jason Kowal, Nikki Hogan, Shannon Bailey, John Armstrong. 
Team members not pictured – Tifa Kerbal and Will Paul.

SHI: What is Global Thinking?

Jason: Global Thinking is a creative agency based in Alexandria, Virginia. The vast majority of our business is for private companies, we work for multi-national companies doing all types of marketing work from branding to digital strategy to campaign marketing. As an organization we have been committed to devoting a significant portion of our time to causes we believe in and those include non-profits and local business that we know and love and want to help. In the case of Shared Hope, we saw the opportunity; we saw a great need for a voice that was fitting the cause.

SHI: I know we made a rather bold request of you and your team to help with the Demanding Justice Project to expose buyers of sex with children. We had a large vision, tight budget and timeline and difficult subject matter. But you decided to stand with us and dedicate time, passion and creativity to accomplish what has become one of our most powerful and inspiring projects to date. Why?

Jason: I have to be honest, it was not an easy decision to make, but it was an impossible decision to walk away from. While we were considering what could be done, we were only considering doing this the right way. While I was working with my team we discussed how to bring DJP into the stream of projects we do. Fortunately, we’ve had enough success since starting that we’re able to take on some amount of work purely out of love and this was a case like that. I think the two factors that specifically came into play were the things I kept coming back to: this wasn’t just a subject that needed attention, it was the right thing to do. We really wanted to be involved. The second part, which affected me personally, is that I have two daughters who are the same age as some of the girls who are affected by this crime. So, I have a reminder every night. I think it’s true of a lot of the people who worked on the project. It’s important to note that there was a team who worked on it, who were equally passionate about it and wanted to put every bit of extra effort to make sure we had a fantastic end product.

SHI: Do you have any advice for others in business who may be interested but are wondering how to get involved?

Jason: When you are evaluating your decision on what types of business to get involved in, you have to ask yourself: do I want to be doing the same thing every day for the same clients? Does it really matter if it personally affects me? Does it affect me because I’m human? That’s why we do what we do at Global Thinking. When we’re evaluating every opportunity that comes before us rather than asking, how is this going to affect me, we ask how am I going to affect others?

SHI: This can be a challenging topic to work on. What part of this project was most impactful for your team?

Jason: The statistics about demand aren’t ones you forget quickly. The magnitude of the problem affected how people felt about the work in a positive way. There is also a real benefit that comes back to the group that works on a project like this; they push the boundaries on what they are comfortable working on. Really, it’s a way people can come together and come up with great ideas.

How have you been inspired to engage in the battle to stop trafficking? Leave us a comment below.

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Ninth Circuit: Privacy for buyers of sex with children outweighs protection of children http://sharedhope.org/2014/12/09/ninth-circuit-privacy-buyers-sex-children-outweighs-protection-children/ http://sharedhope.org/2014/12/09/ninth-circuit-privacy-buyers-sex-children-outweighs-protection-children/#comments Tue, 09 Dec 2014 21:25:32 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=9943 California Proposition 35 made sweeping changes to California’s child sex trafficking laws. On November 6, 2012, over ten million people in California voted in favor of the act, making it the most successful ballot in California history. Over 80% of voters voted in favor of Prop 35 and it is easy to see why: increased [...]

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California Proposition 35 made sweeping changes to California’s child sex trafficking laws. On November 6, 2012, over ten million people in California voted in favor of the act, making it the most successful ballot in California history. Over 80% of voters voted in favor of Prop 35 and it is easy to see why: increased penalties for traffickers, mandatory law enforcement training, designation of fines from convicted traffickers for victims, and requirement of sex traffickers to register as sex offenders are among some of the changes to California law that were enacted.

Proposition 35 was not met without opposition, however. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of anonymous sex offenders to prohibit enforcement of a provision which requires buyers of sex with children to register their online identifiers as part of their sex offender registry requirements. Buyers, under Prop 35, would be forced to disclose their internet identities and activities once convicted for an offense against a child. Information about the buyer’s online presence would then be used by the community and law enforcement to protect children against repeat exploitive behaviors.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California upheld a lower court’s decision to enjoin the provision regarding registration of buyer’s online identifiers, holding that the provision is an unconstitutional burden on free speech for the sex offender. In making this decision, the court gave greater constitutional weight to the privacy of sex offenders than the protection of children. Complete online privacy and anonymity, in the holding of the court, is a right which even convicted child predators deserve. How did privacy become a more compelling societal interest than protection of children?

Convicted child predators often have their rights taken away by courts. In many states, a buyer on the sex offender registry is forbidden from living within a specified distance from a school or child care agency. Society chooses to establish these restrictions in order to reduce the availability and access to children for child predators. The internet should not be an exception. In an age where nearly everyone has a digital identity, including children, shouldn’t predators be restricted from access to children online? The Ninth Circuit says no, despite inconsistency with federal law.

Convicted criminals forfeit privileges in society because of the decisions they made to exploit the vulnerable in our society. Sex offenders should not be allowed to retain privacy privileges at the cost of the reality of the re-offenders among them using that privacy to contact and exploit more children. Many buyer cases involve a digital interaction using social media or classified websites. If buyers remain anonymous on the internet, they will continue to use these websites to target and approach children.

Protection of the vulnerable in society is among the fundamental roles of government. Privacy cannot be given to convicted criminals at the cost of protecting vulnerable youth from child predators. Upon appeal of this decision, the Supreme Court will have an opportunity to hear this case and undo the damage being done by the injunction from the Ninth Circuit. The urgency and magnitude of the outcome of this battle cannot be overstated. 

National change is happening on the state level and buyers are subject to sex offender registration in many states. Increasing pressure on buyers and making sure that they are restricted from access to places where children can be contacted, including the internet, must be a part of a state’s response to child sex trafficking. Learn about how putting buyers on the sex offender registry addresses demand and see how your state stacks up against other states in the fight against demand so you can take action.

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5 Ways to Give on #GivingTuesday http://sharedhope.org/2014/12/02/5-ways-give-givingtuesday/ http://sharedhope.org/2014/12/02/5-ways-give-givingtuesday/#respond Tue, 02 Dec 2014 19:31:59 +0000 http://sharedhope.org/?p=9843   Here are a few simple ways to give back on #GivingTuesday to support the life-saving work of Shared Hope International.  AmazonSmile Knock out that Christmas shopping AND donate to Shared Hope! When you start your shopping at smile.amazon.com, you get the same prices as the regular Amazon.com, and Amazon donates 0.5% of your purchases [...]

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Giving Tuesday

 

Here are a few simple ways to give back on #GivingTuesday to support the life-saving work of Shared Hope International. 

  1. AmazonSmile

Knock out that Christmas shopping AND donate to Shared Hope! When you start your shopping at smile.amazon.com, you get the same prices as the regular Amazon.com, and Amazon donates 0.5% of your purchases to Shared Hope! Simply go to smile.amazon.com instead of amazon.com, enter “Shared Hope International” as the charitable organization you want to support, and shop as you normally would! We’ll get a check at the end of the quarter that includes the contribution from your purchase.

  1. Double your Gift

A generous supporter offered to donate $150,000 to Shared Hope if we can match their contribution before December 31. Please give today at www.sharedhope.org/donate to double your gift and help support prevention, restoration and justice solutions for victims of trafficking in 2015.

  1. Become a Path to Freedom Sponsor

The Path to Freedom is a campaign to support restorative aftercare for victims of sex trafficking in the United States. With any donation of $250 or more, a stone with your name inscribed will be placed in the stone pathway at one of our U.S. shelter partners. Each stone will serve as a very real and tangible reminder to the women who walk the path of the many individuals who support them in their journey toward freedom. Sponsor a stone now.

  1. Donate through the Combined Federal Campaign

 The Combined Federal Campaign allows Federal civilian, postal and military donors to pledge a financial contribution to support eligible non-profit organizations that provide health and human service benefits. The CFC is the world’s largest annual workplace charity campaign that helps to raise millions of dollars each year.To contribute to Shared Hope International through your organization’s CFC, submit this number: #60601 to your human resources or payroll department. The minimum monthly contribution is $1.00.

  1. Donate Stock or Estate Funds

If you have appreciated stock or property, you can greatly benefit from wise tax planning and giving by December 31, 2014, through a couple of different options:

  • A cash gift, dated and postmarked by December 31, 2014.
  • Gifts of appreciated stock or property. An asset that you’ve had for over a year, which has increased in value, can be donated to Shared Hope, and you may avoid capital gains tax. You also get the applicable charitable deduction for this year’s taxes. 

For help in planning your special gift, please contact David Austen, CPA, Treasurer of Shared Hope International, at 1-866-HER-LIFE (1-866-437-5433) or email DavidAustenCPA@sharedhope.org

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