In 2010, President Obama designated January as NATIONAL HUMAN TRAFFICKING PREVENTION MONTH. It was established with the intention of re-dedicating ourselves to the prevention and ending of human trafficking – in all is its forms.
Human trafficking is a multi-billion-dollar business, trading in people. Fifty million people are enslaved worldwide, and 80% of those rescued will be re-trafficked if there is not alternative safe employment. Creating safe jobs is critical to ending the cycle of economic vulnerability at the root of this global crisis.
To fight human trafficking and exploitation, we need a strategy that includes more than rescue. We need a strategy that addresses the economic roots of the problem. Freedom Business is that strategy.
Freedom Business creates safe employment for survivors and those at risk of human trafficking. Where most businesses seek to hire the best and brightest, Freedom Businesses exist to hire the unskilled and traumatized – those most vulnerable to exploitation. Where most businesses aim to operate in business-friendly locations, Freedom Businesses often go where few businesses operate and employment opportunities are limited.
The Freedom Business Alliance is an alliance of more than 100 Freedom Businesses. It is more than an industry association, it is an industry facilitator, helping more than one hundred members with training, research, awareness, and development. Learn more at:
IBEC has coached some of these businesses and is ready to serve even more. This month, the IBEC blog will feature two stories which will expand our understanding of the challenges of Freedom Businesses.
“In January 2010, I took a trip to India. As I traveled the country and met with anti-trafficking organizations, I asked the same question, ‘What is your biggest need?’ The answer was consistent, ‘Jobs for survivors.’ If organizations could not provide sustainable employment, survivors were being re-trafficked.” (Nicole Robyn, Freedom Business founder, founding member of the FBA)
Larry W. Sharp, BAM Support Specialist, IBEC Ventures