NAHT Calls for You to Help – Covid-19 Continues to Play into Traffickers’ Hands

Covid-19 continues to be a calamity for the fight against human trafficking. Since April, this NAHT blog has brought your attention to how traffickers are taking advantage of Covid-19 to further exploit vulnerable victims. Human trafficking thrives on chaos and desperation, and Covid-19 is continuing to fuel human trafficking globally. Iowa direct service programs have lost some volunteers and many have cut back services because of Covid-19 and the risk of infection. Here is how you can help the NAHT.

On December 1st, the annual GivingTuesday global fundraising campaign will be launched. This is a huge effort to promote donations to nonprofits such as NAHT. Grass roots donors gave nearly $2 billion world-wide on GivingTuesday in 2019. We hope to inspire you to go to our NAHT donate page at https://iowanaht.org/donate-now/ to make a donation between now and Tuesday, December 1st. If you prefer, go to our Facebook page here and donate through Facebook. Or you may simply write a check. Send your donation to our office at 5508 West Lincoln Way, Ames, IA 50014. Please make your checks out to Iowa Network Against Human Trafficking. Thanks for your help.

NAHT Five Ranked Board Approved Legislative Priorities for 2021

The hard-working NAHT Legislative Advocacy Committee is chaired by Maggie Tinsman. The committee developed the following five legislative priorities for 2021. The NAHT Board approved these priorities in the following rank order:

  1. The NAHT requests that the Iowa legislature adopt a Safe Harbor Law that protects minors against prosecution for any crimes committed while they were trafficked. 31 states have already passed Safe Harbor Laws.
  2. The NAHT requests that the Iowa legislature adopt legislation to enact the expungement of crimes committed by adult survivors which occurred while being trafficked.
  3. The NAHT requests that the Iowa legislature adopt legislation requiring schools to provide child sex abuse awareness and prevention for students, parents, and school employees. The NAHT is collaborating with Prevent Child Abuse Iowa and both organizations will work for passage of this bill.
  4. The NAHT requests that the Iowa legislature adopt legislation to add human trafficking victims to Iowa’s Rape Shield Law. Iowa’s Rape Shield Law (Rule 5.412 Sexual abuse cases; relevance of victim’s past behavior) does not currently extend rape shield protection to victims of sex trafficking. Iowa should enact laws that provide protections for Iowa sex trafficking victims in the trial process.
  5. The NAHT requests that the Iowa legislature adopt legislation to create uniform statewide local law enforcement authority regulating massage businesses. The American Massage Business Association, Iowa Chapter has initiated this proposed legislation. If adopted, this would allow local law enforcement in all jurisdictions to monitor massage businesses in order to root out elicit activities such as sex trafficking. The bill would mandate that law enforcement in all cities and towns take on this responsibility in addition to the 23 cities which currently have anti-trafficking massage ordinances.

NAHT Signs Petition Urging President Trump to Stop the December 8th Execution of a Trafficking Survivor

The U.S. Department of Justice has scheduled a December 8th execution of Lisa Montgomery. Lisa is a survivor of child abuse, multiple rapes, domestic violence, and sex trafficking. Lisa is the only woman on federal death row and the scheduled December 8th execution is shocking for it’s moral blindness and outright cruelty. For more information click here (PDF).

New Design to NAHT Website

Our website administrator Lara Marsh with ratherthanrunning, LLC redesigned and updated the NAHT website. The following are highlights of this redesign:

  • The logo is now centered in the top. This helps eliminate some of that white space that was there before. Also added is a Facebook icon to the header.
  • Newly created sliders are now on the homepage. They are the same information, but the transitions are different.
  • There are some color changes (like a light blue background behind the page titles).
  • Improved display on mobile devices
  • More interactive features such as an updated home page slideshow
  • Drag and drop editing

We invite you to explore the Network website which is the go to place for information on human trafficking in Iowa. Tap here to check out the redesigned website: https://iowanaht.org/.

Two New Anti-Trafficking Posters Now Available

The Network posted two new posters/flyers on its website that will be added to the 7 posters already available to the public. If you want copies you can go here: https://iowanaht.org/resources/iowa-brochures-and-posters/. Feel free to make copies using your printer or if you don’t have a printer send the digital poster to a local print shop. Because of its tight budget, the Network no longer distributes color paper posters but instead makes them available for download on the Network website.

Information, Articles, and Resources

  1. Untouchable Attorney Arrested and Charged with Sexual Trafficking
    Here is both a news article and video clip:
    https://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2020/10/24/untouchable-attorney-charged-sex-trafficking/6023108002/
  2. Texas Police Department Anti-Human Trafficking Operation Leads to 21 Buyer Arrests
    https://kfdm.com/news/local/beaumont-pd-anti-human-trafficking-operation-leads-to-21-arrests
  3. Training U.S. health care professionals on human trafficking: Where do we go from here? (PDF)
  4. American College of Emergency Physicians Policy Statement on Human Trafficking (PDF)
  5. Sun Gate Foundation Survivor Scholarship (deadline Dec. 1)
    https://www.sun-gate.org/scholarships/
  6. The Federal Office for Victims of Crime announced the launch of the Human Trafficking Capacity Building Center website.
    Watch the Human Trafficking Capacity Building Center video, and visit the Center’s new website to learn more.
  7. 109 Victims Rescued in Largest Ohio Anti-Human Trafficking Sting
    https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/10/28/jarod-mills-arrested-ohio-child-sex-sting/
  8. US Marshals Rescue 45 Missing Children in Anti-Human Trafficking Operation
    https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/us-marshals-rescue-45-missing-children-in-anti-human-trafficking-operation/2359452/
  9. United States launches new center to fight human trafficking
    https://ge.usembassy.gov/u-s-launches-new-center-to-fight-human-trafficking/
  10. 10 Women Rescued and 5 Traffickers Detained in Kansas City, Missouri
    https://www.kctv5.com/news/local_news/police-5-detained-after-human-trafficking-operation-in-oak-grove/article_5373cb74-18ad-11eb-91c5-3ba59a5bc1fd.html
  11. Human Trafficking Education Study of the Nation’s Medical Schools (PDF)