New workshop to help identify, prevent human trafficking

A series of upcoming workshops aim to train Brock University faculty, staff and students to identify human trafficking and to support those experiencing it.

Human Trafficking: The Spectrum of Exploitation will take place online Thursday, May 20 from noon to 1:30 p.m., and Wednesday, May 26 from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Participants will also complete a 90-minute online learning module prior to taking part in the live workshops on Microsoft Teams.

The workshops are hosted by Brock’s Human Rights and Equity (HRE) team and designed specifically for the Brock community.

Krystal Snider from Collaborative Community Solutions will teach participants about how human trafficking affects students, how to watch for signs of trafficking, and about intervention and support options for students who are being trafficked.

The workshop will also unpack the layers and differences between sex work, exploitation and trafficking, and explore nuances of how these elements affect people from marginalized communities.

Talia Ritondo, HRE’s Gender and Sexual Violence Education Co-ordinator, said human trafficking awareness and prevention is of particular importance in Niagara.

As the region has among the highest reported cases of human trafficking in Canada, young people in Niagara are at a heightened risk of experiencing human trafficking, she said.

This risk further increases for those who identify as a member of marginalized communities, such as students who are international; Black, Indigenous and People of Colour; disabled; two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, plus; and/or of low socio-economic status, Ritondo said.

“This workshop offers Brock staff, faculty and students a space to learn, explore and ask questions about the impact of human and sex trafficking, and how to intervene with and support students experiencing it,” she said.

In addition to the sessions taking place in May, HRE will also host several student-specific workshops about human trafficking in August.

Anyone interested in participating in the May workshops is asked to register online here.

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