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Human trafficking as a business outranks Apple

Emily Roese, Journalism Staff Reporter

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The number of people enslaved by human trafficking has globally skyrocketed by 30% in the past seven years from 27 million in 2007 to over 35 million people in 2014. More than 44,000 survivors have been identified in the past year, but at least 20 million victims of trafficking remain unknown.

Human sex trafficking is defined as “sex trafficking in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained 18 years of age.”

A Majority of children being sold for sex are between ages 12 and 14, but child trafficking victims for labor, sex, or organ trafficking can be anywhere from 1 to 18 years old. 400 children have been recovered from sex trafficking in our home district of Sacramento alone.

California is a top destination for human traffickers, the state’s extensive international border, its major harbors and airports, its powerful economy and accelerating population, its large immigrant population, and its industries make it a prime target for traffickers.

Steven Zantingh, who is highly passionate about ending sex trafficking, is part of a local coffee shop, Origins Coffee and Tea, in Rocklin, California. According to Zantingh, Sacramento is #2 in the couny for human trafficking. in fact if you counted Human Trafficking as a business, it would outrank Apple.

Many people and organizations have begun to take a stand against human trafficking, one of those organizations is Origins Coffee and Tea.

Origins is a non-profit, fully functional coffee shop that has joined the cause to end human trafficking. All profits go to two foundations, The Grace Network and Courage Worldwide. The Grace Network is located in Sacramento and gives resources to people on the streets so that they aren’t sold by traffickers. And Courage Worldwide houses girls who are on the streets and/or are victims of human trafficking.

Origins has started a campaign called “One Cup Closer to Freedom”, Manager Steven Zantingh described it by saying,

“If you … instead of buying coffee from Starbucks, or Peet’s, or wherever, and instead you buy it here [Origins] essentially you’re buying one girl’s freedom from slavery for that entire year.”

Everyone who works at Origins is a volunteer, hundreds of people volunteer per quarter ( 4 quarters per year ), and each person can be trained as a barista, cashier, finances, clean-up, etc. Volunteers work for 4 hours per week and work the same 4 hours every week. Volunteers earn non-profit experience and volunteer hours. Scarlett Helbock, Junior at Woodcreek High School, volunteered at Origins. She said,

“It was a ton of fun and everyone there was devoted to their cause. Origins is like a huge community, and it just has a great atmosphere”

She stated that she began working there because she had recently learned that sex trafficking was a big problem, even in our local area, and after that she felt like she needed to do something to help.

To volunteer at Origins you have to be 15 years old or older and you can volunteer by filling out the form on their website, www.origincoffee.org, or by emailing the manager at [email protected]

If you’re looking to volunteer at Origins there is one located in Rocklin, CA at 2168 Sunset Blvd. and you can volunteer for the Grace Network and Courage Worldwide at their websites; www.thegracenetwork.org and  http://courageworldwide.org

 

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Human trafficking as a business outranks Apple