In the fall of 2007, the RCMP held a workshop in Sydney, Nova Scotia on the topic of Human Trafficking. People from all over Atlantic Canada were invited to attend. From that workshop, the Newfoundland and Labrador Human Trafficking Committee took its roots. There was a conference/training event held in St. John’s in the Fall of 2008 after which all the participants were contacted and invited to a meeting to discuss formation of a Committee. The Committee became a group comprised of people from government and non-governmental sectors who were interested in the eradication of human trafficking and included representatives from:
Federal and regional police departments – RCMP and RNC (CI and CISNL)
Federal and Provincial Departments (CBSA, Victim Services, AES, CYFS)
Non-governmental agencies (Salvation Army NL Division, Association for New Canadians, THRIVECYN, English School District, Eastern Health (SANE), Choices for Youth, Provincial Advisory Committee on the Status of Women, Stella Burry (Naomi Centre), Presentation Sisters, Centre for Ecology and Justice, Mercy Sisters, St. John’s Airport, St. John’s Port Authority, Native Friendship Centre, St. John’s Citizens’ Crime Prevention Committee, VeraCare, NL Sexual Assault and Crisis Intervention Centre, St. John’s Coalition Against Violence)
Interested individuals (community members, researchers)
It is hoped that eventually the membership will be comprised of at least one participant from all sectors of the province that will have a role/interest in the elimination of human trafficking. At present, our membership is primarily limited to participants in the St. John’s metro area however we envision a larger participation to include the entire Island and Labrador.
Since 2008, the Coalition hosted another provincial conference in 2014 with a follow-up participants’ workshop, developed and facilitated a training program for the Royal Newfoundland Constabulary, held a Human Trafficking Awareness Week, co-hosted a week-long running of the play Diablo, performed by the Spanner in the Works Theater Company from Belfast, Ireland.
To help eradicate Human Trafficking through public awareness and education, services to trafficked persons, advocacy, and resources and training support to law enforcement.
- Raise awareness of Human Trafficking in the community and create a network of contacts so that victims of Human Trafficking can be identified and supported.
- Ensure a coordinated effort to provide a first and second response to victims of Human Trafficking.
Currently, the primary objective of the Coalition is to raise awareness of Human Trafficking in the community and create a network of contacts so that victims of Human Trafficking can be identified and supported.
While our mandate is to help eradicate human trafficking, it is recognized that until human trafficking is eliminated, we must provide support and services to victims of HT by ensuring a coordinated effort to provide a first and second response to victims of Human Trafficking – providing immediate and follow up services as well as advocacy and community connections.
Members of the Coalition are available to provide training support and services to both the federal and provincial police departments and non-governmental agencies, as well as to the community at large.
Originally the NL Human Trafficking Committee, the NL Coalition Against Human Trafficking Inc. was incorporated in December 2012.