Workshop to tackle human trafficking

Two experts on the problems of human trafficking will join local presenters in Williams Lake this week to present a two-day workshop.

Two experts on the problems of human trafficking will join local presenters in Williams Lake this week to present a two-day workshop.

Larissa Maxwell of the Salvation Army’s Deborah’s Gate and Detective James Fisher from the Vancouver Police Department will be the keynote speakers. Eva Navrot, project manager with the Women’s Contact Society, will be giving a community update on activities that have been happening in our community.

“It’s all about enforcement and education,” said safer communities co-ordinator  Dave Dickson. “The workshop will be open to anyone and everyone. One person trafficked is too many.”

Human trafficking is becoming the number one form of exploitation in the world, whether it’s through a labour or sexual nature, he added.

“We need to create that open door so people feel safe to call the police or Crimestoppers. The workshop will look at ways to create awareness.”

Deborah’s Gate is the only high security safe house and rehabilitative program in Canada for victims of human trafficking age 18 and up.

Since its inception in 2009, it has provided emergent support and long-term residential programming for victims of labour and sex trafficking, and is nationally recognized as a leader in human trafficking rehabilitation and community reintegration.

Working in partnership with government, social services, and especially law enforcement, Deborah’s Gate assists high profile victims across Canada access trauma informed, emergent, and individualized, long term support and care.

The Vancouver Police Department Counter Exploitation Unit exists with a mandate to investigate prostitution, child pornography, child luring and illegal gaming.

The Unit has become an authority in the field of investigating subjects living on the avails of prostitution and trafficking persons.

The key to successful prosecutions is proper witness management and the VPD CEU utilizes a wide spectrum of government and non-government agencies and programs to ensure the safety and well-being of victims and witnesses.

Frequently Deborah’s Gate is a primary contact for the VPD CEU.

The workshop will take place at city hall chambers on Oct 24, 7 to 9 p.m. and Oct. 25 from  9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and  lunch will be provided.

For more information call Eva Navrot, (250 392-4118) Harriet Hird (250 392-8709) or Dave Dickson (250 392-8701).

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