Opal Singleton Keynote Speaker at Rescue IE: Human Trafficking Conference
RESCUE IE: Human Trafficking Conference, April 14 in Redlands
Redlands, CA – The RESCUE IE: Human Trafficking Conference will be held on Saturday, April 14, 9 am – 3 pm, at the ESRI Conference Center, 380 New York Street, Redlands, CA. Parents, teachers and people who work with youth are encouraged to attend. The conference addresses the growing problem with sex trafficking of youth in the Inland Empire and was organized by the Rotary Club of Redlands in partnership with a group of concerned parents, citizens, businesses, juvenile authorities, law enforcement, and leaders of youth/family agencies in the region.
“Many Inland Empire residents, parents, and professionals do not understand the threat or scope of child sex trafficking in their own community,” stated Kim Clark, conference emcee and Doctor of Public Health. “Not only is this a difficult topic to discuss publicly, but it is even more difficult to wrap our heads around a comprehensive solution that includes: prevention (through adult awareness and classroom education); prosecution (by law enforcement agencies); and restoration (the provision of care and support for childhood victims). The goal of this RESCUE IE Human (Sex) Trafficking Conference is to present and explore these three dimensions and to stimulate ongoing cross-sector involvement aimed at eliminating child sex-trafficking in our communities.”
Keynote speaker will be Opal Singleton, President and CEO of Million Kids and Director of Development for Rapha House International. She is a leading authority on this critical social issue facing our nation. “By educating and creating awareness about how this is happening with children and both teen females and males today, concerned parents and community members can help put an end to the exploitation of innocent youth in the Inland Empire,” stated Singleton.
Other program speakers familiar with this issue facing the Inland Empire include representatives from the San Bernardino County Coalition Against Sexual Exploitation (CASE). Formed in 2009, CASE is a partnership of public and private entities who have joined together to develop resources to educate, prevent, intervene and treat victims of sexual exploitation. San Bernardino (SB) County District Attorney Mike Ramos, Juvenile SB County Attorney Karen Martinez, and Cassandra Helmuth, SB County District Attorney’s Office, are among the speakers.
A video film titled “Teenage $ex 4 $ale: Human Trafficking in San Bernardino County” will be presented. It is an Emmy-nominated documentary produced by the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office that delves into the problem of sexual exploitation in the nation’s largest county. From boastful pimps preying on young women to one woman’s quest to open a home for female victims, the film highlights a unique coalition of government agencies and how they are reaching deep into the community to eradicate human trafficking. Raymond Morehouse, Outreach Pastor for Youth Hope, will discuss the film.
Other speakers include Riverside County Sheriff Nancy Aguirre and Christian Counseling Service representatives, who will discuss resiliency factors in survivors.
A teen survivor of sex-trafficking will give a first-hand account of her experiences and how she was able to break away and put her life back together. Peggy Stapleton with KSGN radio will moderate a panel session with other case examples.
Conference attendees will learn how to watch for signs of sexual exploitation, the methods that predators use to steal or coerce youth into a life of abuse and slavery, and how to help improve coordination of services that prevent, identify, discourage, and intervene in sex trafficking in our region.
To read more about RESCUE IE and to register, go to: www.RESCUEIE.com. The cost is $29 and includes lunch.
The Rotary Club of Redlands has a history of supporting community projects and education. To learn more about the club, visit: www.redlandsrotary.org or call 909.798.0953.