Free Austin: Human Trafficking Awareness Campaign
The First Annual Free Austin initiative is being observed this month to raise community awareness of the growing crisis of Human Trafficking in Central Texas.
The Central Texas Coalition Against Human Trafficking and ALLIES Against Slavery in partnership with other anti-trafficking organizations have coordinated multiple events across the city as part of this initiative.
Here at Soma Austin, we will be hosting one of these events.
Trafficking+Fair Trade: Dark Side of Chocolate Film Screening & Q&A with Local Panelists (RSVP)
The Dark Side of Chocolate is a documentary about the continued allegations of trafficking of children and child labor in the international chocolate industry. While we enjoy the sweet taste of chocolate, the reality is strikingly different for African children. Consumers around the world were outraged to discover that child labor and slavery, trafficking, and other abuses existed on cocoa farms in the Ivory Coast, a country that produces nearly half the world’s cocoa. Although the industry agreed to voluntary protocols to end abusive and forced child labor on cocoa farms, has anything changed?
After the film, we will host a Q&A Panel with local leaders who are committed to using Fair Trade to prevent trafficking for vulnerable populations.
- Shelton Green, Founder of What's Your Response and Good and Fair Clothing, one of the founders of ALLIES of Central Texas, and sits on the Central Texas Coalition Against Human Trafficking Committee.
- Kirsten Dickerson of Raven + Lily, a socially responsible brand dedicated to empowering women through design partnerships and sustainable economic opportunities.
- Leslie Beasley of The Open Arms Shop employs refugees at a living wage, using re-purposed t-shirts to create one-of-a-kind products.
Attendees will be able to pick up more information about fair trade and local retailers, as well as shopping tips & sample fair trade chocolate.
- When: Tuesday, September 20th at 6:00pm
- Where: Soma Austin Community Church, 4201 S. Congress Avenue #300, Austin, TX 78745
- RSVP Here
Other Free Austin Event Highlights
"Trade" + Local Response
“Trade”, inspired by Peter Landesman’s chilling NY Times Magazine story on the U.S. sex trade, “The Girls Next Door,” TRADE is a thrilling story of courage and a devastating expose of one of the world’s most heinous crimes of sex trafficking. The story is about a 13-year-old girl, Adriana who is kidnapped by sex traffickers in Mexico City, Trapped by an underground network of international thugs who earn millions exploiting their human cargo, transporting her to a secret internet sex slave auction. The victim’s brother and a Texas cope forge a close bond as they frantically pursue Adriana’s kidnappers before she is sold and disappears into a brutal underworld from which few victims ever return.
Panel discussion following:
- Abbey Fowler – Human Trafficking Unit, Office of the Attorney General
- Deek Moore – Austin Police Department, Human Trafficking Unit
- Royal Williamson – San Marcos Police Department, Victim’s Services
- When: Monday, September 19th at 6:00pm
- Where: Austin New Church, 11530 Manchaca Rd Austin, TX 78748
- RSVP: Here
Connecting Art + Justice
Restore a Voice presents a one night movie event featuring Call + Response, a movie that raises awareness of the global epidemic of Human Trafficking. “Call + Response”, a “rockumentary” is both a concert featuring well-known artists (including Moby, Natasha Bedingfield, and Switchfoot, and many others, all performing gratis) as well as interviews with celebrities (Julia Ormond, Ashley Judd), politicians (Madeline Albright), sociologists, journalists, and activists. This evening is in response to a call to create a movement connecting art and justice.
Panel Discussion: Restore A Voice, Trade in Hope, ALLIES Against Slavery
- When: Thursday, September 22nd at 7:00pm
- Where:For the City Center, 500 E Street Johns Avenue, Austin, TX 78752
Stop Child Trafficking Now: Freedom Walk
Partner with SCTNow.org and thousands of individuals in 35 cities nationwide as we walk/run this September to stop the most heinous crime of our day – child sex slavery. By walking or running, YOU can help bring an end to slavery in our cities and in our nation once and for all! It is simple to register and raise funds! 100% of funds raised will directly support our mission to stop the demand for child trafficking.
- When: Saturday, September 24th at 9:00am
- Where: Triangle Shopping Center, 4616 Triangle Avenue, Austin, TX
- Learn more & Register: SCTNow.org