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Addressing Systemic Racism in our Everyday Work

During February, we spent all month sharing on social media about the intersection of race and human trafficking. While data on human trafficking victims is limited, according to Lighthouse and other credible sources, 40% of trafficking victims identify as Black, while making up only 13% of the total population.  It is clear that Black people are disproportionately impacted by human trafficking. 
 
Without recognizing and addressing how systemic racism contributes to human trafficking we will never be able to achieve our mission of protecting freedom and dignity for all. 
 
We are not the only ones who believe we must address racism in this work. Rachel Lloyd, Founder and CEO of Girls Education and Mentoring Services (GEMS), shared the below message during a 2015 conference hosted by Allies. Her words are as poignant today as they were then. 
 
I encourage you to watch her full remarks in the video below. If you have limited time, skip to minute 13 where she discusses the intersection of race and trafficking. Supporting the anti-trafficking movement requires speaking out boldly about systematic racism. Black lives must matter to us if we are truly for freedom and dignity for all.
As Rachel Lloyd points out, all too often “the reality is in this country the zip code that you are born into predetermines your social and economic status.”  
 
Let’s work together to change that. 

P.S. For those looking to support Texas through the aftermath of the terrible winter storms, please check out our Instagram post here to see how you can help. You can also view this report to learn more about how Black people, especially women and girls, are disproportionately affected by human trafficking.

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