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Swords into plowshares

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Swords into Plowshares is the blog of the Peacemaking Program and the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations of the Presbyterian Mission Agency of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

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Posts with tag: sex trafficking

January 8, 2014

Human Trafficking Awareness Day

January is human trafficking awareness month and January 11 is human trafficking awareness day. The year 2014 marks the 151th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. President Abraham Lincoln, upon signing the Emancipation Proclamation said, “I never, in my life, felt more certain that I was doing right than I do in signing this paper.” Because of the groundbreaking work of our ancestors, slavery was outlawed in the United States.  However the legacies of chattel slavery continue to haunt our society even as we turn to face a new form of slavery: human trafficking.

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A ...

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May 24, 2013

What I Have Been Through Is Not Who I Am

by Brendan Welsh

Carol Smolenski speaking to seminar groupCarol Smolenski, executive director of ECPAT-USA, spoke to yesterday’s seminar group from the Presbyterian Church in Westfield, NJ about her organization's work to protect American children from sexual trafficking. In her organization’s film What I Have Been Through Is Not Who I Am we meet Katrina, a young woman who was coerced out of her job as an Atlanta restaurant hostess when she was 17 by a patron who, unbeknownst to her, was intent on making money off of her through the sex trade. The man gained Katrina’s trust not only by paying ...

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May 24, 2013

Only a glimpse

by Marissa Costello

I was inspired today by three speakers whose presentations all related to one atrocity: human trafficking and forced labor. Ryan Smith, Presbyterian representative to the United Nations, Kevin Cassidy, Senior for the International Labour Organization, and Carol Smolenski, executive director of ECPAT-USA, each spoke to a seminar group from the Presbyterian Church in Westfield, New Jersey. I was inspired by each speaker’s passion to change the world one life at a time, which just left me in pure awe. Let me tell you a bit about one presentation.

Kevin Cassidy speaking to the groupMr. Cassidy presented a PowerPoint that incorporated pictures ...

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February 20, 2013

All the good that I can do

by Alexander Haines

Bloomfield College group before Chernobyl QuiltWe had the pleasure of hosting a group of students and staff from Bloomfield College today and toured the UN building before returning to the office to hear speakers on several topics. By walking through the rooms of the United Nations (including the General Assembly hall, where Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon was present and the General Assembly was in session to launch the “Year of Quinoa”), the group gained greater awareness of how the United Nations system functions (resolutions of the UN Security Council are legally binding, while resolutions of the General Assembly carry the moral weight ...

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October 23, 2012

ECPAT-USA: Buy Art Not Kids is a huge success

The Presbyterian Human Trafficking Roundtable joined our partners at ECPAT-USA at ECPAT-USA’s second annual fundraising event “Buy Art Not Kids” event last night.  I was glad to join Tony De La Rosa- Interim Executive Presbyter of the Presbytery of New York City, Lisa Anderson- Director, Women’s Multifaith Programs at Auburn Theological Seminary, Alpha Brown- Presbyterian Women of the Presbytery of New York City and others in celebrating art and ECPAT-USA’s work.

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) joined ECPAT by sponsoring this event. To learn more about PC(USA) work on human trafficking, please visit the Human ...

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April 21, 2011

Get home safe

It happens almost every night. I shut off the computer, turn out the light, and leave the office. I walk down the hall to the elevator and push the call button. When the cab arrives, I push "1" and head...

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