As ABA readies itself for its first in-person meeting since January 2020, safety is top of mind. Not only in terms of the ongoing pandemic, but how to also provide a safe environment for all attendees and those with whom we share a space. ABA’s Values include being socially responsible. And, as we’ve seen during the past couple of years, our actions — and lack of action — can make a difference.
There are so many ways that we can work together for a better world for all. And, while many of ABA’s efforts are behind the scenes to attendees and membership, there’s one priority that we can all help with as we begin to travel again.
According to ECPAT, the leading anti-child trafficking organization in the United States, “human trafficking is a form of abuse where people profit from the control and exploitation of others. The International Labor Organization estimates there are over 40 million victims globally — 1 in 4 of whom is a child. Victims are often sold in hotel rooms and transported via airlines, commercial buses, and the on-demand economy.”
Many in the hospitality industry (including Hilton, which owns the Arizona Biltmore) have committed to help stop human trafficking by educating their staff and by working with authories to create a database of hotel room interior photographs. Sex traffickers regularly post photos of victims posed in hotel rooms on websites and often use the cover of a convention to go unnoticed.
Besides educating ourselves as to the signs of someone needing help, we can help find victims and prosecute perpetrators by downloading the TraffickCam app on your smartphone. Before you unpack, open the app and follow the prompts to upload photos of your hotel room to a law enforcement database. It only takes a few minutes and can help to save a life.