L-R: Tina Paulson, FACESS, Penny Harrington, Legislation, Madeline Kristoff, Community Relations Officer for US Citizenship and Immigration Services USCIS and Kaye Van Nevel, Soroptimist International of Vista and North County Inland
September Collaborative Meeting
by Kaye Van Nevel, SI Vista & North County Inland
Olivia Navarro, Shining Stars and Tina Paulson, FACESS, will conduct Mentor Training for survivors this month; every Tuesday evening from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. 490 Corporate Drive, Vista. For complete information, www.shiningstarsbreakingchains.org and www.togetherfreedom.org
Shining Stars is also sponsoring a special, single-evening screening of “SOLD.”
Tuesday, October 11th, 7:30-9:30
In San Marcos at Edwards San Marcos Stadium 18
1180 W. San Marcos Blvd.
San Marcos, CA 92069
SOLD is a powerful movie that tells the unforgettable story of a girl who risks everything for freedom after being trafficked from her home in Nepal to a brothel in India.In order for this event to happen, 70 people need to pre-reserve a ticket before October 3rd. You can learn more about the film and purchase your tickets here: https://www.tugg.com/events/137217
• ToGetHerFreedom is also sponsoring an in-depth Child Sex Trafficking Training course the last 4 weekends in October. FLYER HERE: together-freedom-tf-training-course-flyer-2-1
• Sisters of the Streets: Survivor Jaimee Johnson requests gently used purses and hygiene items for her non-profit outreach. Bring to November Collaborative meeting. (Flyer attached) sisters-of-the-streets-purse-project
• 3 Strands Global is sponsoring its second Break Free Fun to fight human trafficking. Saturday, Oct. 8, 7:30 a.m. Tecolate Shores Park, North Mission Baby. http://www.3strandsglobal.com
• San Diego Mission Team 2016 will host a program on Nov. 5th 7:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Point Loma Nazarene University. Topics: Pornography & Human Trafficking: LGBT & the church .
Important Legislative information was given by Penny Harrington and Tina Paulson. SB524 will reach the desk of Governor Jerry Brown any day this month. He has until Sept. 30, 2016 to either sign, ignore (it will be passed if he chooses this option) OR Veto.
“This bill will transform and force all residential educational programs, including FACESS, into a group home/foster care licensing structure. The foster care system and group homes are not only costly to the State and the taxpayer, but are responsible for over 40% of the recruitment of minors INTO sex trafficking here in California. This bill would also not allow FACESS to operate exclusively as a Christian-based program.”
FACESS urged us to help stop this bill by writing to Governor Brown asking him to veto SB424.” You can view their flyer here: flyer-stop-california-senate-bill-524
Elizabeth Rodriguez has been a Deputy District Attorney for 6 years. Within the DA’s Office she has handled many serious felony cases and has been assigned to the Juvenile Gang Division, East County Division, North County Division and is currently assigned to the Sex Crimes and Human Trafficking Division at the Vista Court House. Ms. Rodriguez spoke about the decrease in the number of gangs in North County, and highlighted the ground-breaking study released in 2014 on gang involvement in sex trafficking done by Point Loma Nazarene University. It is an $810 million industry! She reported the difficulty in prosecuting the predators of these crimes, mainly due to continued fear of the victims to testify. They carry continued worries about the threats against themselves and their families. Frequently, they don’t consider themselves victims, or will return to the “life” for the perceived glamour and ‘love’ from their pimps.
Madeline Kristoff is the Community Relations Officer for US Citizenship and Immigration Services USCIS in San Diego and Imperial Counties. She spoke about T and U visas which are issued to immigrants with specific status requirements. Congress created both “T” and “U” visas to encourage the victims of certain serious crimes to cooperate with law enforcement officials who are prosecuting criminal offenders. Only certain types of crimes will qualify the victim for a T or U visa; but both T and U visas include the qualifying crime of human trafficking. The Trafficking Victims Protective Act (TVPA) defines a human trafficking victim as a person induced to perform labor or a commercial sex act through force, fraud or coercion. There are variable requirement between the two visas for eligibility. Please go to http://www.uscis.gov for more information.
Next Meeting: Thursday, November 3, 2016, 9:00 a.m.,
United Methodist Church of Vista, 490 S. Melrose Ave., Vista
Guest Speaker: Danny Santiago
Task Force Commander, California Department of Justice, Bureau of Investigation