The Sisters of Benet Hill Monastery continue their mission of providing awareness and education of current social justice issues to the Colorado Springs community.
SAVE THE DATE: “The Barefoot Mile” September 8, 2018
Lewis Palmer Stadium 1300 Higby Rd. Monument, Co. 80132
Check in: 9:30 AM, walk at 10:00 AM
For more information or questions, please contact Sister Rose Ann Barmann, OSB: email@example.com
By Sister Rose Ann Barmann, OSB
From Spring Review 2018
Our third annual Human Trafficking Prevention Series held in January and February at Pikes Peak Library 21C was well attended by 140 participants over four weeks.
On February 5th, attendees learned of local agencies that are “Caring for the Survivors” (theme for the session). These agencies consist of a victim advocate, Erika Vida who works directly with the Human Trafficking Unit of the Colorado Springs Police Department, Vicki Proffit, Executive Director of Sarah’s Home and Lindy Havens, Executive Director, of Restore Innocence. The latter agency provides restoration bags containing personal necessities for rescued human trafficking victims.
The final session, “Your Voice & Vote Matter,” featured two Colorado State House Representatives, Lois Landgraf and Paul Lundeen. Both discussed their work drafting, sponsoring and supporting legislation to better define and address human trafficking in Colorado and outlined their struggles to prosecute traffickers and secure funding to help survivors, in particular children who have been forced into prostitution. Current bills include some important additions: Human trafficking of children should be recognized as child abuse and entitle the children to government funded aftercare.
Kelly Dore, former Elbert County Commissioner and current Executive Director of the National Colorado Human Trafficking Survivor Coalition facilitated the discussion. Kelly, herself, is a survivor of familial trafficking. She was exploited by her father from the age of 12 months to 14 years of age.
The series helped participants realize “we cannot do everything to stop human trafficking, but we can all do something.” We can educate ourselves and make informed purchases by not supporting products made by sex/labor trafficking victims. Most importantly, we can help raise awareness, support our legislators in their efforts, and keep our eyes open for potential victims. Please memorize or input the national multi-lingual hotline number 1-888-3737-888 in your smart phone and give it out to anyone you suspect might be a victim.
Sister Mary Teresa Hicks, OSB sang her newly written song, “Bring Them Home.” She wrote this song as a prayer after being moved by the stories of human trafficking.