Coast Kern is the Group Relations Program Director for the Middle for Justice and Reconciliation at Level Loma Nazarene College and lives in San Diego.
On August 29, the county Board of Supervisors authorized a brand new coverage that prioritizes human trafficking schooling for college students, mother and father and directors all through San Diego. This follows an area legislation enforcement operation by which eight kids had been recognized as human trafficking victims within the Southcrest neighborhood.
This horrific actuality of human trafficking amongst our kids has been uncovered earlier than. Analysis carried out in 2016 by Jamie Gates of Level Loma Nazarene College and Ami Carpenter of the College of San Diego revealed an alarming actuality: human trafficking happens in each San Diego neighborhood, and the typical age at which one enters the intercourse commerce is 16 years previous. -old.
The current determination of the Board of Trustees is a crucial step in direction of defending our kids from human traffickers. However the subsequent step is much more necessary: making a plan for financing and implementation.
In 2017, Governor Jerry Brown signed laws that made California the primary state to require human trafficking prevention schooling for all college students in seventh by means of twelfth grades. It has been six years because the laws was handed, and a plan for its financing and implementation has but to be drawn up.
However the dynamics of human trafficking and the techniques of traffickers are advanced. Gates and Carpenter found that human trafficking is a part of an $810 million underground unlawful intercourse financial system. Human trafficking is tough to detect. It is laborious to know. And with out advanced information of the issue, it is even more durable to interrupt.
Nonetheless, with the appropriate crew and a inventive strategy, this isn’t unattainable.
By listening to survivors of human trafficking and convening a multidisciplinary crew of consultants, PLNU’s Middle for Justice and Reconciliation developed the KNOw MORE!© Prevention Curriculum to finish the human trafficking disaster amongst our youth. KNOW MORE!© makes use of an interactive drama to introduce college students to the techniques of human traffickers, allow them to acknowledge warning indicators and present them search assist.
In preparation for the county Board of Supervisors vote, Supervisor Jim Desmond printed an op-ed expressing his help for the brand new coverage. He wrote: “I advocate for a curriculum that raises consciousness of the techniques traffickers use, the warning indicators of potential human trafficking conditions, and search assist in the event that they or somebody they know turns into a sufferer of this sinister commerce.”
Thankfully, this curriculum already exists. It has reached 12,318 youth in San Diego public colleges. It has additionally created a pathway the place 186 younger individuals can search instant assist.
kNOw MORE!©’s long-term objective is a daring one: to equip one hundred pc of San Diego County youth with human trafficking prevention schooling, beginning with our most susceptible.
This fall, kNOw MORE!© will proceed in direction of this objective. The curriculum will likely be applied at 5 colleges within the San Diego Unified and Sweetwater college districts. Greater than 3,000 college students, grades 9 by means of eleven, will likely be outfitted with the instruments to forestall them from falling into the cycle of human trafficking of their neighborhoods.
KNOW MORE!© builds a essential, protecting barrier between our susceptible teenagers and the traffickers who search to take advantage of them. It permits mother and father, directors and neighborhood members to entry coaching instruments to guard their youth from human trafficking. And it has the potential to offer an umbrella of prevention help to youth in San Diego County, making a neighborhood free from exploitation.
Much more concretely, KNOw MORE presents the nice alternative to create the roadmap that can convert the current determination of the provincial Board of Supervisors from an modern coverage to an answer that’s applied on the bottom.
In case you are fascinated about staying updated with the know MORE! Prevention curriculum, you’ll be able to join the Middle for Justice and Reconciliation’s month-to-month e-newsletter on-line at bit.ly/NewsCJR.