Canada's Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter - Issue 1, October 2012

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In This Issue

Feature Organization – ACT Alberta

The Action Coalition on Human Trafficking- (ACT) Alberta operates Chapters in Grande Prairie, Edmonton, Red Deer and Calgary, which bring together diverse stakeholders to identify and respond to human trafficking from a community perspective. The organization develops and facilitates training for service providers and law enforcement, coordinates services for victims and is in the process of developing victim assistance protocols. ACT Alberta has provided workshops on human trafficking to thousands of Albertans in dozens of communities across the province and participates in multiple national initiatives. For more information on the organization and its work, please go to http://www.actalberta.org/.

ACT Alberta also publishes a monthly newsletter and can be followed on Facebook and Twitter.

Training & Events

In June 2011, the British Columbia Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons (BC OCTIP), with support from the Government of Canada, launched 'Human Trafficking: Canada is Not Immune' an online training course for service providers about indicators of human trafficking and ways to meet the unique needs of trafficked persons. The training program is currently available in English on BC OCTIP's website, with a French version coming later in 2012.

Please visit http://www.pssg.gov.bc.ca/octip/training.htm to access the training.

Maple Leaf Alberta Projects, a non-profit organization whose goal is to raise awareness on human trafficking in Canada, Ukraine and throughout Eastern Europe, is holding its 4th Annual Fundraising Gala to raise funds to help build and operate a safe house in Ukraine for victims of human trafficking on Friday, October 26th, 2012 at the Ukrainian Youth Unity Centre in Edmonton, Alberta. For more information about the work of this group and/or the event please go to http://www.mapleleafap.ca/.

The Canadian Council for Refugees (CCR) invites representatives of NGOs to a National Forum on Trafficking in Toronto on Wednesday, November 28, 2012. The Forum will provide a space for networking, information-exchange and strategizing among NGO's on best practices, emerging needs and policy development priorities to meet the needs of trafficked persons.

The Forum will be held the day before the CCR Fall Consultation (29 November - 1 December 2012), which includes a trafficking workshop on the morning of Thursday, November 29th to allow for dialogue with government representatives, law enforcement and other interested parties.

This Forum is principally intended for NGOs and service providers involved in work on trafficking of foreign nationals in Canada. Academics and others interested in acting in response to trafficking issues are welcome to attend. The Forum is closed to government; however, government representatives and law enforcement are strongly encouraged to attend the workshop the next morning.

Information about the Forum and Consultation is available at http://ccrweb.ca/en/meetings.

Annually, on December 2nd, PACT-Ottawa hosts an 'End Slavery Day' event to commemorate the international day to abolish slavery and to raise awareness about human trafficking in the local community. This year's event taking place at the Bronson Centre,  focuses on educating and raising awareness among youth but all are invited to attend. For more information, go to http://www.pact-ottawa.org/end-slavery-day-2012.html.

National / Government of Canada News

National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking

Canada's National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking, with participation from 18 federal departments, was launched on June 6, 2012. It is a comprehensive blueprint to guide the Government of Canada's fight against the serious crime of human trafficking. For more information go to http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/cntrng-crm/hmn-trffckng/index-eng.aspx.

Canada Launches New Human Trafficking Webpage

Hosted on the Public Safety Canada website, the new Human Trafficking webpage is a one stop shop for all things to do with the Government of Canada's efforts to combat human trafficking, including information on federal funding programs, reports, announcements, and media releases. For more information, please go to http://www.publicsafety.gc.ca/cnt/cntrng-crm/hmn-trffckng/index-eng.aspx.

Human Trafficking Stakeholder Consultations

In November/December 2012, Public Safety Canada will be hosting five Regional Stakeholder Roundtables across Canada (Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax), to provide a forum for anti-trafficking stakeholders and federal representatives to share information and identify emerging issues and/or gaps and challenges related to the issue of human trafficking. In advance of these roundtables, Public Safety Canada is holding online stakeholder consultations in October with the results from these consultationsinforming the focus of the roundtables.

If you have any questions about these consultations, please email HTT.GTTP@ps-sp.gc.ca.

Government of Canada takes action to protect temporary foreign workers

Effective as of July 4, 2012, Human Resources and Skills Development Canada will issue negative Labour Market Opinions (LMOs) for all applications from employers linked to the sex trade, effectively preventing them from hiring temporary foreign workers.

Also, as of July 14th, Citizenship and Immigration Canada will no longer process new work permit applications from temporary foreign workers intending to work for sex trade related businesses—namely strip clubs, escort services and massage parlours. The full news release can be accessed here.

RCMP HTNCC – 'Fast Facts' Newsletter

The RCMP Human Trafficking National Coordination Centre (HTNCC) will be releasing a newsletter (Fast Facts) on human trafficking. 'Fast Facts' will be released quarterly starting in October 2012 and will include information about law enforcement initiatives and activities, statistics, feature cases, training for law enforcement, best practices,  and regional features. If you would like to receive a copy of 'Fast Facts', please send an e-mail to htncc-cnctp@rcmp-grc.gc.ca.

Raising Awareness among Temporary Foreign Workers

The 'Temporary Foreign Workers: Your Rights are Protected' pamphlet is designed to inform individuals of their rights during their time in Canada as a temporary foreign worker. A pdf version of this pamphlet can be found online (in seven languages (English/French and five others) is available at http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/publications/index.asp#working.

The pamphlets are also available in hardcopy, and can be requested by contacting Human Resources and Skills Development Canada 140 Promenade du Portage, Portage IV, 10th Floor Gatineau, Québec K1A 0J9 Fax: 819-953-7260 Online: http://www12.hrsdc.gc.ca.

In the Regions

Western Canada

On September 14, 2012, Minister Bonds opened 'Building on BC's Response to Human Trafficking', a consultation event with service providers, community leaders and criminal justice partners. This event marked the third consultation held by BC's Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons to develop a BC Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking. Two other consultations were held to inform the development of this plan in Vancouver (February 2, 2012) and Victoria (June 13, 2012).

The BC Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking will be developed this fall incorporating feedback and recommendations from all three consultations with additional input from research and information on direction within Canada's recently released National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking.

Prairies

On May 3-4, 2012, NASHI: Our Children, a Saskatchewan-based organization focusing on awareness raising and education, hosted a Youth Forum on Human Trafficking in Saskatoon. Craig Kielburger from Free the Children provided the keynote address to 1,100 students and teachers from across the province.

Additional sessions of music, video and speakers were held on May 4th at Oskayak School and St. Joseph's Hall.

Photos and video from that event are available on the Youth Forum website at www.youthunchained.org/event.php.

Ontario

The TruckStop Campaign, led by PACT- Ottawa, and funded in part by Public Safety Canada, is an awareness initiative that provides frequent travelers with the knowledge they need to identify suspected cases of human trafficking and alert law enforcement.

An audio documentary, 'WATCH for the Signs' is being distributed free of charge at truck stops across Ontario and is available for free download at the website below The CD also includes an adaptation of 'The Walk', a play about trafficked women and girls. PACT- Ottawa has also produced posters, wallet cards, and beverage coasters as part of the campaign.

For more information, please visit http://www.pact-truckstop.org or visit them on Facebook www.facebook.com/pact.truckstop.

Undertaken by Stan Burditt of Men Against Sex Trafficking (MAST) and members of the London Anti-Human Trafficking Committee (LAHT), the Walk for Freedom was a 10-day, trek from London, Ontario to Queen's Park in Toronto (Sept. 6-15th, 2012).

The purpose of the Walk for Freedom was to make the public throughout Southern Ontario more aware of the problem of sex trafficking and to ask the provincial government to provide more resources to anti-human trafficking organizations working on the issue.

For more information, please go to www.mast-canada.com.

For more information about MAST, an organization dedicated to getting more men involved in the fight against sexual trafficking through education, awareness, advocacy and collaboration, please visit www.mast-canada.com.

Comprised of a group of concerned citizens in the London area, the LAHT work to raise awareness about the problem of human trafficking both in Canada and around the world. To learn more about the work of LAHT, please go to www.stopht.ca.

Quebec

Half the Sky Quebec, an organization dedicated to raising awareness and encouraging action to combat human trafficking and the forced exploitation of women, children and men, and its partners  hosted 'Not for Sale'a human trafficking 'Awareness to Action' event, on Tuesday, October 23rd, 2012 from 1:00-2:00pm at 4100 Sherbrooke St. West, Montreal. For more information on this event or to learn more about the organization, please go to http://halfthesky-quebec.tumblr.com.

Maritimes

The Nova Scotia Inter-Agency Group on Human Trafficking (NSIGHT), a voluntary, intersectoral and cross-jurisdictional group that is focused on combating human trafficking in Nova Scotia,recently completed a project mapping out all available services in the province for victims of human trafficking.

To access the information (English only) please visit: http://www.nsdomesticviolence.ca/resource-map/type/Human-Trafficking-Assets-Map.

Legislative Updates

On June 28, 2012, Bill C-310 'An Act to Amend the Criminal Code (Trafficking in Persons)' received Royal Assent. The Act amends the Criminal Code human trafficking provisions by providing an evidentiary aid to courts that enhances the definition of exploitation. It also amends the Criminal Code to enable Canadian human traffickers to be prosecuted in Canada when the offence occurs outside of Canada.

For more information on these or any other Bills, please visit http://www.parl.gc.ca/LegisInfo/Home.aspx?language=E&ParliamentSession=41-1.

Funding Opportunities

Status of Women Canada recently launched a call for proposals to invite funding applications for projects that promote equality for women and girls, and reduce gender-based violence in Canada.

The Call for Proposals, 'Working Together: Engaging communities to end violence against women and girls', will help prevent and reduce violence against women and girls in Canada. One of the four themes of the call is “Preventing and reducing the trafficking of women and girls through community planning” (Deadline: November 9, 2012).

If your organization has solid roots in the community, works effectively with partners and wants to achieve concrete results for local women and girls, this opportunity may be right for you.

For more information, please go to: http://www.swc-cfc.gc.ca/fun-fin/cfp-adp/2012-2/index-eng.html .

The Victims Fund at Justice Canada provides funding through grants and contributions to individuals, organizations, and provincial/territorial governments to support projects and activities that encourage the development of new approaches to victim services, enhance existing services, promote access to justice, improve the capacity of service providers, foster the establishment of referral networks, and increase awareness of services available to victims of crime and their families, including victims of human trafficking.

For more information about the Victims Fund and how to apply, please visit: http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/pi/pcvi-cpcv/over-pres.html .

Research & Publications

In 2012, ACT Alberta partnered with Mount Royal University to publish 'Human Trafficking in Calgary: Informing a Localized Response', a first of its kind study examining human trafficking responses in specific communities. The full report (English only), can be accessed here.

To Submit Items
If you have anti-human trafficking activities, events, news or stories that would like to share, send your suggestions to HTT.GTTP@ps-sp.gc.ca for consideration in future issues.

Contact Information
For more information on the newsletter, or to be included in the email distribution list please send an email to HTT.GTTP@ps-sp.gc.ca

This newsletter is being offered up to three times a year by the Serious and Organized Crime Division at Public Safety Canada with content provided by anti-trafficking stakeholders across Canada. Its relevance depends on the information received from our partners.

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