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Dogged Anti-Trafficking Activities Result in Change

  • Photo from Catholic-sf.org

Two Religious of the Sacred Heart, Fran Tobin and Mary Ann Foy, are members of STOP SLAVERY: Northern California Coalition of Catholic Sisters against Human Trafficking, a coalition of nine Bay Area congregations. Reflecting on the reality that the incidence of trafficking rises at major sporting events, the coalition decided to take action steps in advance of the America’s Cup races scheduled for August and September. A year ago the sisters identified a prominent hotel corporation with known connections to event preparations and compiled a list of its hotels in the Bay Area. Each member chose a hotel or two, sent a letter with enclosures to its manager, called for an appointment and designed a face-to-face interview. Their aim was to encourage managers to have all their personnel trained to recognize the signs of on-site human trafficking during the America’s Cup competition and to know how to report this to authorities.

Persistence has paid off. The hotel corporation will commence training for their employees at all San Francisco-area locations in time for the America's Cup. A story about the STOP SLAVERY efforts appeared in the May 24 issue of Catholic San Francisco.