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January 2019 Edition

A synthesis of the latest anti-trafficking news, events, and information from across the state and the nation.

Animated GIF of the cover of the Council's 2018 Annual Report.
Design and animation credit of the 2018 Annual Report: Brendan Davidson, Division of Criminal Justice, Colorado Department of Public Safety.

Colorado Human Trafficking Council Publishes 2018 Annual Report

Good news everyone! The 2018 Colorado Human Trafficking Council Report is here! The 2018 report synthesizes the activities, work product, and recommendations of the Council and its sub-committees. Recommendations set forth in the report derive from the collective expertise of Council members and Council subcommittee members who represent a unique cross-section of professionals, community groups, and survivors across the state.

This year, the Council placed particular emphasis on two critical issues: the state’s response to labor trafficking and how to identify effective human trafficking prevention strategies. Labor trafficking recommendations include policy changes for state lawmakers and government departments to consider that would better protect populations vulnerable to labor trafficking and punish those who exploit individuals for their labor. The Council’s recommendations on prevention strategies include a four-step framework to recommend as a promising practice to help organizations and communities identify effective human trafficking prevention strategies.

As in previous years, the 2018 report summarizes salient issues the Council addressed as well as events that took place in Colorado’s anti-trafficking field in the Year in Review section. This section includes information on the Council's statewide public awareness campaign plan. It also summarizes the joint Colorado Department of Human Services and Colorado Department of Public Safety grant project funded by the U.S. Department of Justice to improve regional capacity to address child/youth victims of human trafficking in Colorado.

The Council continues to track federal, state, and local data on human trafficking incidence and service provision to human trafficking survivors as reported by law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and non-governmental organization service providers. In a similar fashion, the report also provides a summary of training curricula development by the Council and the impact of the council's training curricula being disseminated statewide.

This spotlight provides but a cursory overview of the Council’s 2018 Annual Report. To read the Annual Report in full, please visit the Colorado Human Trafficking Council’s website!

News and Publications

Photograph of a person looking at their smart phone.

Reported U.S. trafficking cases on the rise as victims seek help by texting

According to Reuters, reports of human trafficking in the United States are expected to leap by 25 percent this year over last. National Human Trafficking Hotline Director, Caroline Diemar, attributes this increase to the availability of round-the-clock texting. The hotline based its anticipated final numbers for 2018 on the roughly 8,700 reported cases it got from January through September, compared with about 7,000 in the same time period of 2017.

Photograph of an individual signing a document.

President Trump signs "Abolish Human Trafficking Act of 2017" into law

President Trump recently signed S. 1311, the "Abolish Human Trafficking Act of 2017" into law. The law reauthorizes the Trafficking Victims Protection Act; continues funding for the Domestic Trafficking Victims' Fund through Fiscal Year 2021; and authorizes appropriations through FY 2021 for the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Homeland Security for programs responding to severe forms of human trafficking among several other provisions. President Trump was critical of certain provisions in the bill

Cyntoia Brown granted clemency after serving 15 years in prison 

Cyntoia Brown, a woman serving a life sentence for killing a man who bought her for sex when she was 16 years old, was granted clemency, by Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam. "If Cyntoia Brown were tried today, legal experts say she would not have been tried in the same way," said CNN affiliate WZTV anchor Stacy Case. Brown received her associate's degree from Lipscomb University in 2015 and has been working toward her Bachelor's degree while in prison. She also collaborates with the Tennessee Juvenile Justice System to counsel young people at risk.

Photograph of a computer screen with lines of code.

Machine Learning used to track human rights abuses

Pacific Standard reported on the work of Patrick Ball, a computer scientist who developed a machine learning model to comb through various lists of conflict-related deaths in Guatemala's Ixil region between April 1982 and July 1983 to demonstrate that violence during this time was not random and patterns point to the genocide of indigenous people. Counting victims of violence is notoriously difficult. Ball warns against incomplete estimates that can create false confidence in the wrong conclusion. However, Ball observes that, "there's no witness you can kill to silence a machine-learning model." 

Upcoming Webinars

Addressing Human Trafficking within the STOP Formula Grant Program

This webinar will take place on Thursday, January 17th at 1:30 p.m. MT. This webinar will feature efforts in Pennsylvania to utilize STOP funding to combat human trafficking. This includes a description of their implementation planning process, protocol development, outreach to key stakeholders, and coordination with other funding streams like VOCA. 
Click to Register

National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month and January 11th is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day. Here are some local events that are taking place as part of the awareness month. 

Western Colorado Anti-Human Trafficking Conference

The Klein Frank Foundation will host a conference on human trafficking on January 11, 2019, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Colorado Mountain College in Rifle, CO (map). For more information about the conference, including how to register, visit the conference information page

When Your History Follows You: Record Sealing CLE

On January 18, from 8:00 to 11:00 a.m., the Colorado Women's Bar Association is partnering with ALIGHT, the Colorado Juvenile Defender Center, and the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar to train attorneys on how to help human trafficking survivors seal records of convictions and expunge juvenile delinquency records so that they no longer present a barrier to gainful employment and housing. For more information, including how to register, visit the event's registration page

Boulder County Human Trafficking Symposium

The Boulder County Human Trafficking Task Force and the Boulder County District Attorney's Office will host a symposium on human trafficking on January 23, 2019, from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the Boulder County Clerk and Recorder's Office (map). You can learn more by visiting the event's official registration page.


Other Upcoming Events

2019 Freedom Network Conference

The 2019 Freedom Network Conference will take place on March 20-21, 2019 at the Hilton Mark Center in Alexandria, VA. The title of the 2019 conference is Grounding and Growing: Tools for a Powerful Anti-Trafficking Movement. Visit the Freedom Network USA website for more details. 

Regional Collaboration Meetings

January 8th, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. Alliance to Combat Human Trafficking - Pueblo. This meeting is not open to the public. Please contact for more information. 
January 8th,  5:30 – 7:00 p.m. Human Trafficking Task Force of Southern Colorado. This meeting is held at the First United Methodist Church in Colorado Springs (map). For more information, please contact Julee Bellar.
January 14th, 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Western Slope Against Trafficking. WSAT meetings are not open to the public. For more information, please contact Tom Acker
January 16th,  2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. 17th Judicial District Anti-Trafficking Task Force. This meeting is not open to the public. For more information, please contact Chris Rossi.

Upcoming Council and FRAC Meetings

Upcoming Front Range Anti-Trafficking Coalition Meeting

Jan. 17th, 2:00  3:30 p.m. 
Front Range Anti-trafficking Coalition (FRAC) meetings are open to the public. The location of the next FRAC meeting is the Community Room at the DPD District II Station. For more information about the next FRAC meeting, please contact Cate Bowman.

Upcoming Colorado Human Trafficking Council Meeting

Jan. 25th, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
The meeting will begin at 9:00 a.m. Colorado Human Trafficking Council (CHTC) meetings are always open to the public. The Council meeting will be held at the Jefferson County Human Services Building (map). For more information, visit the Council meetings page.
The content of this newsletter is not an endorsement nor does it reflect the opinions, views, or affiliations of the Colorado Department of Public Safety, Division of Criminal Justice, the Colorado Human Trafficking Council, or the Front-Range Anti-trafficking Coalition. The content of this newsletter is intended for informational purposes only. 

Copyright © 2019 Colorado Department of Public Safety, Division of Criminal Justice, Office for Victims Programs, All rights reserved.

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