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Published on : Wednesday, January 13, 2016
The San Francisco International Airport (SFO) conducted a pair of training sessions today for airline and airport personnel to help stem the tide of human trafficking on commercial airlines. The training, the first in a round of sessions planned at all major Bay Area airports, was led by Airline Ambassadors International and the Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition. The classes, which offer industry-specific training to allow airport employees to recognize tell-tale signs of human trafficking, are timed to address the potential for trafficking activity related to Super Bowl 50.
“SFO was the first airport in the U.S. to train airport and airline personnel on how to recognize human trafficking, and we’re leading the way again,” said Airport Director John L. Martin. “By opening this latest round of education at Bay Area airports, our commitment to this cause has never been more evident.”
“The vast majority of human trafficking is made possible through the airline industry,” said Airline Ambassadors founder and President Nancy Rivard. “Airport and airline employees play a vital role in tackling this issue, by being our eyes and ears to identify and report suspected trafficking activity.”
“By offering this training at all major airports in the Bay Area, our region stands ready to address the issue,” said Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition founder and Executive Director Betty Ann Boeving. “This level of awareness should serve as a deterrent to would-be perpetrators of human trafficking.”
In March 2012, with the leadership of Congresswoman Jackie Speier, SFO hosted the first program in the nation to train airport personnel in identifying and stopping human traffickers. In January 2015, the Airport hosted a “SFO Unites Against Human Trafficking” charity walk, which raised $150,000 to support Freedom House, a local non-profit organization dedicated to assisting survivors.
Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition works on the front lines to train Bay Area citizens and civic groups in awareness and sustainable engagement to fight local trafficking in the region. BAATC has hosted the largest community-based anti-trafficking training in the United States to date .
Airline Ambassadors International provides humanitarian aid to children and families in need as well as relief and development to under-privileged communities worldwide. We escort children in need, hand-deliver humanitarian aid to orphanages, clinics, and remote communities, raise public awareness and involve youth in humanitarian efforts around the world.