Along with ACT’s mission to work with victims of domestic and sexual violence, we also specialize in services for identifying and working with victims of human trafficking. ACT has developed several partnerships within Southwest Florida servicing the five county area. One is to work with the Southwest Florida Regional Human Trafficking Coalition and to develop a partnership of the community, service providers, law enforcement and the community to combat Human Trafficking through services, education, coordination, outreach and training. The other is to work with the Human Trafficking Awareness Partnership, Inc. (HTAP) in developing specialized training and programs for our community.
We have developed a network of support among service providers and the SW Florida Community in the joint fight against Modern Day Slavery. The coalition’s mission is to promote community awareness of the crime by educating the public through the media and presentations to community groups as well as the general public. It support the work of service providers by coordinating training and resource development and coordinating community resources to facilitate the work of law enforcement and victims services.
The SWFL Regional Human Trafficking Coalition coordinates efforts among law enforcement agencies, human service providers, non-profit organizations and federal and local government agencies began in 2005 in Lee County. The Lee County Sheriff in conjunction with a local service club and a non-profit groups Throughout Southwest Florida there is a need to enhance the interdiction, awareness and outreach of human trafficking in its various forms to both minor and adult, foreign nationals and domestic victims who are forced into prostitution, indentured servitude, peonage, or other forms of labor and sex trafficking.
The SWFL Regional Human Trafficking Coalition are the efforts of local human services providers, local and federal law enforcement and federal prosecutors and the network of law enforcement and human service providers in the area of child protection, domestic violence, hospitals, legal services, and both private and governmental organizations which provided trainings and education to professionals and community groups and leaders.
The collaborative nature of the anti-human trafficking efforts in Southwest Florida have led to the certification of hundreds of victims and the provision of services as well as the training of thousands of community members and professionals since 2005. Both federal and private foundation grants have been awarded to agencies in the Coalition for collaborative efforts in providing training and victim service and law enforcement services such as Point of Contact Point of Rescue created to increase awareness, identification and rescue of victims.
Not only does ACT receive referrals from our partners, we:
1. Provide clinical therapeutic treatment, counseling, legal services and comprehensive case management and advocacy for adult victims of human trafficking;
2. Provide referral to collaborative partner for victims needing forensic interviews;
3. Both partner and ACT case manage referred victim;
4. Participate in the development of new training, prevention and awareness programs of partner staff and/or volunteers.
5. Provide a 24 hour hotline for the public, victims and partners.
6. Provide shelter for adult victims and any children they may have and support services which includes comprehensive residential case management for victims of human trafficking.
For more information about human trafficking and our programs and collaborations, contact us at 239-939-2553.