Showing posts from September, 2023

Meeting with the FBI

Every once in a while I get emails from professionals working in the anti-trafficking field wanting to come to the Human Trafficking Research Lab to learn about our research and visit Millikin. This week we had the honor of welcoming the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Community Outreach team from the Springfield Office to the lab. They saw us on TV for our human trafficking awareness month panel discussion and wanted to learn more about our research and outreach work in Central Illinois. It is always great to share our research with people and we had an interesting conversation. I also learned how to steer my students in their direction for careers in the future. My students were really excited about the FBI swag!

Human Trafficking shelter visit in Peoria

My students and I hit the road again this week to attend the Central Illinois Human Trafficking Task Force meeting at the Center for Prevention of Abuse (CFPA) in Peoria and tour their shelter for survivors. This is a picture of us with Julisa Sierra the first student to work on the lab (Millikin class of 2019), who is a human trafficking case officer at CFPA and works to assist trafficking survivors within our community. Pretty great to see my former students out there doing amazing things in our community! We were able to tour the shelter at the Center for Prevention of Abuse and learn more about their work and facilities. The shelter also had a Ukrainian flag donated by a local artist to support Ukraine! The 1.5 hour drive across Central Illinois was really flat with lots of windmills.

Statewide Human Trafficking Task Force Meeting

The Statewide Human Trafficking Task Force met this week in-person in Champaign this week. There was a professional development portion of the meeting in the morning and then the meeting was in the afternoon. We heard updates from sub-committees and then read over Meaningful Engagement of People with Lived Experience  from the Global Fund to Combat Modern Slavery. I was particularly interested in the framework and assessment which measures and provides an outline for increasing lived experience leadership across the spectrum of engagement in the anti-trafficking movement. I am planning on having a panel discussion with survivors in January 2024 for human trafficking awareness month and so it was great to learn how to engage survivors of human trafficking. The meeting brought people from all around Illinois and it was nice to see a strong showing from my colleagues on the Centra Illinois Human Trafficking Task Force too!