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tv   Human Trafficking in Travel Tourism  CSPAN  May 8, 2018 1:56am-3:18am EDT

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sunday morning on "1968: america in turmoil," the cold war as a backdrop for the events of 1968, including the vietnam war, presidential campaign, and the space race. talking about that turbulent time or a historian and documentary filmmaker, and the program director of the project on cold war studies at harvard university. atch the program live sunday eastern 9:30 -- 8:30 am . >> up next, representatives from the travel and tourism industry discuss their efforts to combat and reduce human trafficking. this is about an hour and 20
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minutes. >> good afternoon. thank you for joining us. arker,e is allison p general counsel for the helsinki commission. congressman christopher smith is with us today to open our briefing. needs little introduction within trafficking circles. he has been fighting trafficking for over two decades. he is the author of a trafficking protection act in most recentl as the
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reauthorization's that passed the house of representatives. more, here is the representative. [applause] >> thank you. it's a privilege to be here. your leadership on human trafficking has been extraordinary. i want to thank our distinguished panel, the insights we have gleaned from what we have to tell us this afternoon. i want to thank all of you for joining us today. according to the international labor organization, trafficking in the private economy generates profitslion in illegal per year. 16 million people were exploited in labor trafficking. exploitedpeople are in sex trafficking and 4 million others are exploited in
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state-imposed trafficking. for 99%d girls account of sex trafficking and 58% are victims of labor trafficking. todayory you will here shows that it has been happening right under our noses, not only in the united states, but also in other countries. whowill hear from panelists are really on the front line in trying to mitigate and end this horrific cruelty. 1998, i introduced comprehensive legislation signed into
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it was a very hard sell. there were a lot of people who thought it was a solution in search of a problem. when you talk trafficking to u.s. attorneys, they would say, oh, you mean drugs, right? we'd say, no, we're talking about human beings, especially who are reduced to commodities for exploitation over and over again. tough sanctions for governments that failed to meet what we call minimum standards prescribed in the allege legislation. the legislation codified very strong jail sentences and asset confiscation for traffickers here in the united states. on april 19th the indictment of allison mack of the tv series "smallville," -- every 3-5 years we build on the original tppa of 2000.
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2018 is just another year where we're trying to update and strengthen our comprehensive legislation. we've introduced the frederick douglas bill. it passed the house almost a year ago. hopefully the senate will take it up soon and get it down to the president for signature. inspired by nancy rivard's work with the airline industry, one section of the bill will tie eligibility for airline contracts to fly u.s. government employees with whether or not they have a system in place, a protocol. it's not absolute, but it will give preference like we have with delta, and give a very strong situational awareness. we will also tie it to what's happening in the hotel industry,
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because we do know that u.s. government employees all over the country are staying at hotels. we want to make sure that there's a protocol in place there as well, a situational awareness training. if you see something that looks wrong, it's not right, you will report upon it. just this year sweeping legislation was passed. it's ann wagner's bill that states to fight online trafficking. that became law almost immediately as some of the worst online slave markets went dark and the cfo of back page plead guilty to child sex trafficking. a couple of years ago we passed the international megan's law. megan was from my hometown of hamilton. she was brutally murdered and raped by a convicted pedophile who lived across the street. it took eight long years but we got the international megan's law passed. now we notice countries when a
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convicted pedophile plans to travel, that person is notified to that country and they can take whatever appropriate steps, which usually means they're not allowed into that country. so far, about a year now it's been in effect, 3600 sex offenders with sex offenses against children have been noticed to these countries and many, overall the majority of those, have been turned back and said, you will not come to our country and abuse our children in secrecy. i again want to thank this very distinguished panel. allison is going to do the introductions to each and every one of them. this is a good learning moment. these are the expert who wass whohese are the experts have made all the difference in the world and i thank you. >> thank you, congressman smith. we have michael mckuhn. he oversees the 40 council members.
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he also heightens the public's familiarity with human trafficking and its identifiers. the blue campaign, if you see something say something, he raises public awareness on indicators of terrorism and terror related crimes and how to recognize them. representative smith: thank you very much. can even hear me? excellent. first i want to thank you for the blue campaign authorization act passed unanimously through the house and the senate. greatly appreciate your support on that. that is a big first step for us in the department of homeland security to be able to codify that type of office so we'll be there in perpetuity to eradicate this crime. that's the whole point of this
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table and all the work we're doing. we're not trying to fight it. we're trying to eradicate human trafficking. one of the things that's so fulfilling is to know when we work in the spaces that we do, the type of responses i get from the private sector. predominately, when i do my work with the hospitality industry. we've been able to introduce a hospitality tool kit. it's a two-way communication. it's a way for us to get an understanding of what it is they're dealing with and how the federal government can help them combat this crime. that being said, when we work in these spaces, one of the things we're really trying to do here at the blue campaign is to make sure people kind of take a moment and look at things in a way they might not have looked at it before. one of the things we have to deal with is the why. why is a funny little word. it can either paralyze us other empower us. we try to empower people in the blue campaign to be able to take that action they so desperately need. those moments that give us pause, there's a reason why they
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give us pause. we have to explore that. what here doesn't feel right? what is that gut check that doesn't seem right? what am i seeing? that's where the blue campaign is able to come in and help introduce the hospitality industry to the homeland investigations department. it might not necessarily be a a 911 call, but they know that something's going on that's not necessarily right. there's other aspects of the blue campaign that we work on as well, not only with our transportation industry. component, we also helping the unified voice of homeland sick -- homeland security. we go across the 22 components composed of dhs and the interagency work that goes on with it so we are able to make sure we have a unified front when dealing with this.
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i have to say though, the greatest honor of being at the blue campaign and doing this is the victim centered approach that we take to. how we handle this horrific crime, and every piece of product that we send out has survivor input. i think that really makes an important aspect of what we do. if you are going to have an authentic voice, and be in a noisy world, you have to have a strong personal narrative. i think that we're able by getting this kind of victim centered approach but also to get that survivor input. because they might be victims at one point but when they work with us at the blue campaign they're survivors. to be able to work with them and hear their story and give a voice to those who have been voiceless for so long has been one of the most rewarding works of public service. i think that's it for my intro. thank you very much.
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[applause] >> thank you, mick. next up we have tracy breeden, the director of safety communications at uber. has worked to create trafficking education for drivers. she also authored uber's first safety tips for riders. tracy is a subject matter expert in sex crimes and domestic violence, drawing from nearly 15 years of experiment as a former police officer and detective. we're so grateful to have tracy with us today. you, thank you for having uber here today to speak about this very important issue that affects all of our communities across the globe.
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uber connects millions of people across the globe every single day. every single day across the globe we're doing 15 million trips. think about how many people that is coming into contact with one another. we know that our drivers are uniquely positioned to really be able to identify not only victims of human trafficking but to be able to prevent this. we know that we play a significant role, and we want to play that significant role in helping prevent this in our communities and finding ways that we can work with our national partners to make a difference in this space. in 2015 uber partnered to be the first company in the on demand space to sign the code. with that, we started to change our policies, our community guidelines to have zero tolerance for human trafficking on our platform.
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then we tried to find out how can we use our innovation and our technology to help raise awareness to help educate in this space, to also help prevent this in our communities that we serve. we worked with organizations and partners of the mccain institute as well as thorn and polaris to raise awareness around the national hotline out there. we worked with cindy mccain and the mccain institute specifically to the rideshare platform. we wanted our drivers to know if somebody's happening in their vehicle, what would it look like, what would human trafficking look like? we started first by educating and helping raise awareness with our drivers about what it is. i can tell you as a former police officer, most people in our communities don't even know this is happening, they don't know what it is, they don't know what it looks like. the first thing we have to do is then them understand what it is and help them realize this happens in our communities each
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and every day. no community is immune from it. she helped us develop those tips specifically to that platform, what should drivers look for when there's somebody in their car and how can they take action. that is the third step. by taking action, we educated our drivers on calling 911 first and foremost when you're in a safe position. just like mike talked about that gut check, sometimes you're just not going to know if it raises to the level of 911. you might have this feeling or this suspicion that you're seeing something. that's where the national hotline comes in with polaris. a way to call. to get more information. polaris can partner with us to get that information to police. we also rolled out driver events across the nation to educate our drivers to pull in local organizations as well as law enforcement and our national partners to talk about not only that this is a national issue and what it looks like in that
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specific community. working with those partners to help educate and raise awareness. we also did information around the super bowl. putting information out around the big events, but we were also very careful that people understand this is not something that's just attached to big events. this is something that's attached to every day in america . and across the globe. those are some of the things we've been working on. we partner with thorn. we provide our engineers to be able to help thorn develop technology to catch traffickers online. we're always thinking about how can we utilize the people in our organization that have a skill set that can be helpful to these organizations, but also how can we working with our national partners and other folks in this space to come up with solutions, ideas and innovative ways to help combat this on a global level. we're also rolling this outside the united states. for the first time in january we
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sent our messaging and our tips out to nearly a million drivers in the united states. that is every single driver in the united states as well as 10 million writers. we're now rolling that out internationally and working in canada and mexico. canada doesn't have a national hotel hotline but are working on getting a hotline this year around october or november. we're working with polaris to be a part of that, as well as the same thing in mexico. and finding ways we can do things internationally. i was just talking to nancy who's doing training. i'm sure she'll talk about that, in guatemala. that's exciting to hear. of all these countries that we are helping raise awareness with the millions of people who not app,drive, but are on our but ride on our app. we realize we all have a role to play. we have a role to play in the security of our communities, and we take that seriously, and we are committed to finding solutions and doing more in that space.
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thank you for having uber here. >> thank you, tracy. we next welcome nancy rivard, she is the president and founder of airline ambassadors international. it has hand-delivered $60 million of aid to children in 54 countries, orphanages, clinics, and impacting i've hundred thousand children around the world. as representative smith mentioned, she first brought the concern about human trafficking on our flights to his office in 2009. she is working tirelessly with the department of transportation and dhs since that time. we've seen wonderful results. nancy, i will let you tell them more about it. nancy: thank you so much. so i'm the president of airline ambassadors. we have led advocacy on human trafficking awareness since 2009. when i went to congressman smith for assistance in getting the word out to airlines.
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and when the airlines didn't really respond, we took it upon ourselves to develop the first industry specific campaign or training on human trafficking awareness, which we just completed our 70th airport training in hanada airport in tokyo last week. our work will be highlighted at the release of the new guidelines at the end of this month, and is being highlighted this week at the meeting in bangkok as well. because of the faa reauthorization act in the united states in 2016, airlines are required to train flight attendants. most of them are utilizing the blue campaign's excellent online materials. delta is still first and out front. in 2018 they launched an enhanced training for polaris,
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tailored directly for deltas 54,000 employees. we initiated an apprentice program for trafficking survivors, hosted an event to inspire new employees and also local ceos as well as new signage in the airport. this year, american airlines joined delta as being a signer of the code of conduct. jetblue was also rekd recognized -- jetblue's commitment was also recognized at the general meeting last year in cancun. international airlines are jumping on board, too. both air asia and air emirates initiated a major launch of training last year. copa and aero mexico joined the international campaign. airline ambassadors provided training in sacramento last
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year. the airport is proactive for awareness. in february sacramento american airlines agent denise miracle noticed two girls, 15 and 17 who were traveling on a one-way ticket to meet a man they had met on instagram. both their parents thought they were spending the night with each other. her alertness saved those two girls from an uncertain future. congress can help by strengthening the laws to encourage airlines to provide training to all employee groups, including agents, pilots and more. funding should be increased so blue campaign can provide training to staff of all 33 airlines. the online trainings are very good, but many employees do not pay close attention and are not taking the issue seriously. here are three examples. last month on a flight from rome to chicago, all eight flight attendants in the back of a 767
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were sure that a 50-year-old man was trafficking a 7-year-old girl. they went to the cockpit and shared this information and even pointed in the airline pilot's manual where they're supposed to radio to the airport ahead. the pilots refused, saying this has never been mentioned in pilot training and we are not going to take the chance. earlier last year also, the agents in houston where we had provided human trafficking awareness training at the airport, checking out to go home, they said when is somebody going to train us? we see trafficking every day. we just saw it this morning and we don't know what to do. i visited airline operations to ask one of the workers there what he would do if a pilot had radioed in a potential human trafficking case. he said absolutely nothing, has nothing to do with aircraft security.
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more training is needed for all employee groups. training staff of the 33 major airlines should include actual trafficking survivors as we do in all our trainings to make the issue real in motivating people to emphasize it. airports also play a key role in awareness. we helped chicago, las vegas and san francisco establish a video for all airport employees in the online badging office. atlanta, houston, minneapolis and sacramento have also been very proactive. a dhs ad campaign is in most of the customs areas. a21 signage is in new york and chicago. the tips line app that we developed and give out at our trainings has received 1,000 tips since we unveiled it in the last two years.
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however, many airports have not been receptive to training like los angeles and miami. they have said training is not needed, and there are no resources to support it. we know, though, that training is needed. dana hubbard, one of our trainers notice add womand a -- noticed a woman crying outside a bathroom in miami airport. the girl said she didn't want to get on a plane. the man had bought her a ticket the night before in a bar. she didn't want to get on the plane. she wanted to go to new york and she wanted to go home to her mother. donna contacted the airport police. the airport police weren't trained properly in a victim centered approach and they , intimidated the girl so she just said everything was all right. it was donna who took the initiative and got the girl home to her mother, saving her from a future. the human trafficking
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investigations and trafficking institute has one of the best trainings out there for law enforcement. most airports and police departments are reluctant to use their limited training funds on human trafficking awareness training because it's not mandatory at the state level. training resources need to be increased for the training of travel industry personnel. motivating the private sector. although the private sector is critical in this fight, airlines do not truly understand or appreciate that human trafficking awareness is needed and are hesitant to integrate new policies into their corporate cultures. they are nervous that vigilante flight attendants will make false accusations and they will end up in a lawsuit. we sent a letter to 24 ceos of travel companies last march encouraging them to take an extra step also to hire human trafficking survivors.
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not one ceo responded except for the american bus association, which is a shoutout for their social responsibility. the critical infrastructure of our transportation system can no longer be used as a tool to implement human trafficking. or modern-day slavery. it's the fastest growing crime in the world, linked -- there is also a cabin safety issue. in the words of of the association of professional flight attendants, largest flight attendant union in the world, they say, we are committed not the only preparing our membership to recognize and report suspected incidents of human trafficking, but also to raise public awareness of the program. -- public awareness of the problem. putting an end to human traffic willing require a coordinated effort and the commitment of the entire transportation industry. thank you.
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>> thank you, nancy. i'd like to welcome next carol smolinski. she is the executive director and one of the founders of expat usa. end child prostitution and trafficking. she's been working in the field of children's rights for 18 years is a leader in the area of commercial sexual exploitation and child trafficking. she oversaw the development of the first research project on child trafficking to new york city and two other research projects about commercial sexual exploitation of children. and to help obtain better protections for victims. carol and ekpat have been instrumental working with hotel and lodging associations for decades with the code.
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carol: thank you, allison. good afternoon, everyone. i'm very happy to be here. i actually am much older than that introduction implied because i've been actually at this for 27 years. i guess i have to edit my bio. i have been around the block a few times. 27 years ago ecpat began advocate advocating. i am very proud to talk about today how much progress we have made since then. our first success back in 1994 was working to pass extra territoriality legislation that made it possible to prosecute an american in the u.s. for exploiting a child in another country. this law was significantly strengthened in 2003.
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i'm also very proud to say that u.s. law enforcement does spend a lot of time enforcing this law. they've been very proactive. in comparison to other countries. this month a florida man named david lynch was sentenced to 330 years in prison under one of these laws for having exploitded -- exploited children in the philippines. our other big except -- success has been the expansion of the tourism child protection code of conduct, created in 1998. we introduced it here in north america in 2004. the code is a set six voluntary steps that companies can take to protect children from sexual exploitation. carlson company was the partner right from the start back in 2004. it took several years to get more companies to be willing to pitch in.
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in 2011 wyndham and hillton both signed the code of conduct. and today, every large hotel chain has signed the code. also two of the largest domestic air carriers american and delta have signed the code of contact. one of the most important steps of the code is staff training. let me tell you one story about a security agent to worked at a hotel in massachusetts. i'm going to call him benjamin. his hotel was so well trained that the minute a trafficker entered his property, they implemented the protocol and his whole team knew what to do. raymond, the trafficker, was head of an international trafficking ring, who it was later found out had been selling kids at hotels. at over 400 hotels, in fact, before getting to massachusetts. he tried his luck at ben's hotel
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but he was stopped in his tracks. he had brought two children to ben's hotel. instead of being abused they were identified and raymond was sentenced to the maximum penalty of 30 years in prison. big success. so, spreading the word to hold -- spreading the word to hotel associates is crucial. ecpat partnered with marriott to expand training for their associates. the training is now available through the american hotel and lodging association and used by hotel brands across the industry. marriott branded hotels alone trained over 335,000 associated -- associates within 15 months of requiring the training. 335,000 people were trained by marriott within 15 months. imagine if every hotel brand required training. according to a 2017 nationwide survey of hotels, over half of
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the u.s. hotels are trained to help prevent child trafficking. this is a huge development that we're very proud of. more information about our work with the hotel industry is in our report called "no vacancy for child sex traffickers." it is on our website. while we have come very far, we still have a long way to go. in 2016 ecpat pub -- published a two-year study on the trafficking of children. congressman smith was at our global lunch here in the u.s. the study's 47 recommendations set the stage for the next phase of our work. also sharing copies of that with you, the executive summary and recommendations are outside on the table and also on our website. one of the most important recommendations calls for all businesses, not just those in the travel industry, to make
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steps to protect children from sexual exploitation, that all of them adopt child protection policies, train and join ecpat's code of conduct. we are delighted about the new provisions introduced by congressman smith calling for u.s. employee travel to take place with companies that have signed the code. in addition, we are developing a new training for companies that manage corporate travel and events. this will bring information to travel managers at companies across the private sector. companies likeig apple or ford or google have travel managers. those travel managers contract with a company to manage all of their global travel for all of their executives. and we are now starting to train our travel partners about how to talk to those companies about having a policy about training
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their staff about what child exploitation looks like to make sure that all of those people traveling around the world know not just how to travel safely and responsibly, but how to spot potential trafficking cases and what to do if they see them. let me tell you one other story. a woman i'll call jenny attended a session hosted by merit's travel. one of the travel companies. they were having a business meeting in mexico. one of the awareness raising sessions was about human trafficking. on her way home from that conference in mexico, she saw a woman with a plastic bag as luggage who looked disheveled and not quite right. she thought there was something wrong, so she reported her suspicions. she was right. the girl she saw was a human trafficking victim and she was rescued because of this woman. of course, the sexual exploitation of children also happens outside of the context of travel and tourism. one of the fastest growing areas
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that children are exploited in is through the production of child abuse imagery commonly called child pornography. most people are not aware of the vast extent of this problem. the cyber tip line received over 10.2 million reports in 2017. the young age of the children, the internet watch foundation reported that 55% of the images were children 10 years old and longer. -- and younger. content showing the rate and depiction of it was up 25%. this is a huge horrific problem that we are yet to grapple with both as a country and globally. we will soon be issuing a report for recommendations that include things like stronger background checks for anyone who comes in contact with children, more oversight of the internet corporation for assigned names and numbers, among many other recommendations.
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it's a complex and growing industry that needs a range of responses, but that definitely includes government regulation and oversight. as we talk about legislative priorities, i want to thank the mb members of the house who led the charge in spite of .- who led the passage we appreciate your offices who led the charge in spite of opposition from the tech industry. it does call for the pathway for additional regulation to counter the huge growth of children being exploited online. secondly many of the offices have been instrumental in moving along tv p.a. authorization. the house passed bill was particularly strong and made a number of adjustments that we strongly supported. we understand they are very close to a final conference agreement. we look forward to endorsing the bill that will be sent to the president. we've made great strides in the
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protection of children overall of these years. as the problem of child exploitation constantly adapts to a changing world moving off the streets and online going behind the doors of private residences, we have to be very adept at responding. we cannot lag behind the traffickers and abusers who spend every minute trying to get around the laws. we have to work faster, smarter. we will. we can do this. the travel industry is one of the biggest industries in the world, which is a means for exploitation to take place. i am proud of this. i am looking forward to working with all of you to continue this fight. thank you. [applause] allison: thank you, carol. next i'd like to welcome craig coalcut.
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he leads efforts in the areas of travel promotion, terrorism risk insurance, and tax reform. he joined the association after nearly eight years in the united state senate, and is the chief counsel for senator any club car -- any club which craig has been very helpful as we've refined the edd the tvpra. tvpra. craig: thank you for having us here today. thank you, congressman smith, for your years of devotion and passion on this issue. thank you again. i also want to recognize other champions we've worked with that pushed through legislation on the hill.
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senator blumenthal, mr. smith representatives , wagner, walters, bass and many others who have worked on this. to step back for a moment, i joined the american hotel and lodging association just over four years ago after working on capitol hill. a couple weeks into my job i got , a phone call from a senate office asking what our industry was doing on human trafficking. i was honestly taken aback and confused. i didn't know why they were calling us even though i had worked on trafficking on capitol hill, i hadn't come across the connection to hotels. i told him i'd look into it and get back to them. i did not know what i would find. i started asking around the office, asking our members. i was incredibly pleased to find out we had indeed been very engaged on this issue. i found out very quickly, the most significant single action
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2013, the year before i joined the association, we worked with carol and her team at ecpat to design a training program, an online training module geared specifically for hotel employees on human trafficking. carol mentioned in 2016 this was revamped with ecpat again and marriott as well as polaris. it's new and improved version of that program. as she said, marriott has trained over 335,000 employees already. i know a couple of our other major members have trained over 50,000. just from those three companies alone, you're talking 450,000 people trained in the past couple of years. and it is not just those companies, they just have the most up hated statistics. statistics. our efforts on trafficking really focused on two key pillars. the first, training. the other
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is raising awareness. we do whatever we can to do that. these two things work together. the more people are aware, the more they're going to have their companies get trained, have their colleagues get trained and work with others in the industry to increase training. in terms of raising awareness, we've taken a number of steps. i speak on panels like this one whenever i have the privilege of being invited to speak. two weeks ago i was in atlanta speaking with the attorney general of georgia who has been a leader on the issue of human trafficking, an event that was attended by over 200 people, almost all hotel employees who were there to be trained by the georgia bureau of investigation. the attorney general set the framework, and talked about his statewide efforts. the ecpat training is one of the trainings, but there are other trainings out there. sometimes they're done by law enforcement. dhs and blue skpancampaign has
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-- dhs and blue campaign has materials and training available. we're happy to have people trained however works best for them. the congressman's legislation will ensure that more people are trained, and that is vital. we've also invited people to come speak at our events. a couple years ago when we had our big legislative fly-in, we invited one of carol's employees , michelle, to speak at our conference. i believe that year she was only the person on the speaking agenda who was not either a member of our industry or a member of congress. that just shows the value and priority that we place on trafficking. in addition, we take whatever opportunities we can around, as others have mentioned, the super bowl just to put out alerts just to remind hotel employees, hotel
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employees, hotel owners, guests to be vigilant. we make sure to be clear that trafficking doesn't just happen around big events like the super bowl. i think some question whether there is even an increase. whatever the case is, it does present an opportunity to raise awareness. one other step we took was a couple years ago was to issue hotel industry principles on human trafficking. we did this again to elevate it as an issue within our industry and also to give some of our members general guidelines and direction as to how to tackle this problem. that is probably most helpful for our small members. our association has members such as marriott and hilton and hyatt, but we also have small businessmen who own one hotel and it may blue more difficult for them to grapple with these large issues like human trafficking.
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we frequently remind our members, big and small, of the importance of this issue. so, we're proud of what we've done in the industry. it's been a commitment over a long period of time. carlson hotels, which is one of our major members, was the first signatory to the ecpat code of conduct. that was way back in 2004. since then, the major hotel companies have come on board as well. we continue to seek whatever opportunities we can to raise the issue, to raise awareness and to get more hotel employees trained. thank you and look forward to a discussion. [applause] last but not least we
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have nick shapiro. nick is the global head of risk management for airbnb. he served on the national security council staff and was a white house counterterrorism and homeland security aide in the last administration. nick. thank you. i would first like to thank allison for helping put this together. , i amgreat to be here already learning things from the panel. it is an honor to be here. i am the global head of trust and risk management at air b&b. . was previously with the cia, three years ago, i had no idea where i wanted to go, what i wanted to do. there were times i had been to san francisco, and did not know what attack company was going to ch company wase
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going to be like. i learned i was different than anybody else. my meetings in silicon valley, in air b&b, everyone at air b&b, they were so optimistic. brilliant, but so optimistic, and i quickly found out that i to the a counterbalance extreme optimism of the sharing economy. i quickly became the guy no one wanted to invite to meetings, the buzz kill. the guy who says, are you crazy? you cannot do that. it is a great partnership that works. and it has to with the scale we are operating in. i team is in charge of making sure the community at air b&b is safe. we had 300 million guest arrivals to date. we have 5 million listings and -- in 100 91 countries. that is more than the top five hotel cut -- chains combined.
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we take this extremely serious. it has to beg, absolutely eradicated. it is one of the first things that impressed me about air b&b, the commitment the company has to make sure we will use our technological advances to fight that issue. so, we put together shortly after i arrived, a five-point strategy for how we would make sure that the problem of trafficking does not become a problem in air b&b. as the new kid on the block, we have the ability to leverage the expertise and learnings and experience of those who of been doing this for decades. try to put that to use and we developed a five-point strategy. the first is partnerships. , there is so much could work out there, we have to find network.
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bluerked with the campaign, which they have amazing materials. we just signed a partnership with polaris. they have brought a skill set and expertise that the company did not have internally. ,e have been a vacuum cleaner sucking up as much as we possibly can to make sure we set up this program the right way. second, as people have mentioned, training, education, and awareness. we have learned all that training materials, and it limited the program to treat -- to teach our frontline employees. to look for in order to spot trafficking, as well is what they can do when they come across a survivor to handle it the best way possible. the third pillar of our strategy is the most exciting. it lets us go on offense. it is our technological advantage.
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air b&b is lucky, we sit in the technology, of hospitality, and travel. we have some of the brightest minds in silicon valley. every reservation is scored ahead of time for risk. we use machine learning, behavioral analysis, instantly evaluating hundreds of different signals, looking to see if there is anything suspicious about a reservation so we can stop suspicious behavior before it takes place. we can stop the trafficking before it happens in an area b&b. we have 10 years, history of reservations, we can teach our model more every day what is different about this reservation . we learn from polaris and the blue campaign, and everyone who has done this, and we feed this into this model, and it has become a successful tool that we are making smarter every day. we use photo dna. every photo, message, picture on
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air b&b gets screened through photo dna. cni on sure there is no air b&b and we rooted out three at back check every hosting guest in the u.s. and all over the world get screened against financial sanctions, on the terrorist watch list. traffickers have tried to take it vantage of the internet, as we all know. they use the anonymity of the internet. it is a double-edged sword for them. they need the internet to advertise, and to make known where people can go. that is where we go. we do this risk scoring and the background checks, and we are screening the dark web. we are using the sites that
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prosecutors tell us, and we learn from the cases they run, our coordination with law enforcement. we are on the sites looking for those bad actors. advertise ingain some way, it often has to be a contact number, and ip address. these of that nature we are screening in looking for, and if any of it shows up on air d&b, we can stop it before it happens, and help ensure air b&b is a place where this will not be tolerated and it will not continue to grow. fourth is our coronation nation with law enforcement intelligence. we work with interpol, and mike colleagues in the intelligence community -- and my colleagues in the international intelligence community. we have these technological advances, these tools that we need to feed information to, we need to teach at the right
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things to find, and we can make a great dent in this problem. this is the most fun, to be honest. elected communication and public engagement. talking about the horrible issue like trafficking is not what people want when they are going on air b&b to plan their dream vacation. not talking about this, hiding it, sweeping it under the rug and hoping it does not become a problem is not going to do anything except encourage the problem to grow and fester. it will not help eradicated. we do not do that. astalk about the hard topic publicly as possible, because it is a deterrent. we want to traffickers to know we are looking for them, we are screening our site for them. it is not going to happen on my watch, kind of thing. we want them to know we are all over these dark websites,
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everywhere they think they are hiding, that is where we go. we are looking for them to make sure they do not do this on air b&b. there is so much more work to get done. we are learning more every day. want to learn from folks who have been doing this a lot longer than we have. we are excited to learn more, and we will spend time more tomorrow to learn from folks on the hill and in this industry. i'm looking for to their suggestions. i'm looking forward to time with folks on the panel. allison: thank you, nick. i would like to open the floor to questions from the audience first. questions burning. if so, we have a mike to your right. please identify yourselves, and if not, i so appreciate the very practical work each of you do in fighting trafficking within your
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specific industries, and carol and nancy, you shared stories of success. craig, do you have a success story that you would like to share? craig: sure. we hear them, you know, as we talk to our members or drive around the country and make the news, sometimes they don't. one that sticks out in my mind is one that took place in new orleans last year, and there is a 12-year-old boy who was with two older guests, and a hotel employee who had been trained. he thought something looked a little wrong, thought it looked off, and that's often the key as you heard before. there are specific signs that can be taught. we have a lot of them in our training, and sometimes -- i think the most important part of our training, getting a little bit off topic and sometimes the most important part of the training is just reminding hotel employees and airline employees and whoever it is that this is a
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problem that you can help and that you should help, that you have to help, and so when people see something, they know to act, and then when you give them the specific instructions then they are even better equipped to act. so, this hotel employee noticed a young boy with two older men. something seemed off and she heard one of the men say i think i'm going to take this one home with me, and so, you know, the alarm bells went off and she went to her manager at the hotel. they reported it to the police, as it's supposed to work. police came and, lo and behold, the boy had been missing for three days and was in fact a victim of sex trafficking, so because that have hotel employee's awareness and decision to say something to her boss, this boy was saved. i think one of the reasons it stands out in my mind is that although this is overwhelmingly a problem for women and girls, there are men and boys who are victims. and so i think it demonstrates, again, the important, of train,
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vigilant, and knowing that you should take action representative smith: i will just -- if any others have questions, sing out. nick shapiro, would i just say if you're a buzz kill, we need more of it, and i thank you for, you know, piercing that -- you know, it's good to be optimistic, but we need people who are sober, aggressive and realize that this is going on right under their noses so thank you for bringing your skill set to bear. all of are you just tremendous. i would ask if air b&b, you can have a chilling effect that the traffickers decide to go elsewhere which is a good thing as long as elsewhere is also doing a simultaneous standup of these efforts. if i could ask you has this led to any prosecutions, or do you think it's more of a fact that the bad guys feel don't go there because you'll get caught?
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i would also ask, if i could, tracy, how does an uber driver actually do it? they do it while they are going from one area to another with their fare or do they do it as soon as they let that person off, and how do they do it surreptitiously so that the person in the back doesn't take some retaliatory action? is there a code? how do they do that? and are there examples where police respond quickly because we all know uber is there on the spot. i've been amazed any time i'm in washington, you contact uber and they are there. how quickly are the police there to ascertain whether or not it's a bad situation that they are involved with, and i would ask carolyn and maybe nancy if you could just speak to what kind of pushback do you get? we know and you testified at
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previous hearings that i, both of you, that there were some airlines unwilling to do it. american airlines was one of them and now seems not to be the case, you, you know, that fear of some kind of legal obligation or vulnerability. is that over with? do you realize because of the good work of what the blue campaign is doing as well, that they are on the side of the angels and protection and they should not be acquiescent and indifferent is really going to be on the side of the traffickers. they are obviously the conduit from people here to there. first to nick. nick: thank you, and thank you for all the attention you focus on this issue. i would say two things. one, we absolutely don't want to kick the can down the road. i want to make that crystal clear. you know, we have to do everything we can to prevent it from happening at airbnb, but we do that so we can help eradicate
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across the travel and tourism industry, and that's frankly where we've seen a lot of help from polaris. polaris saw early i think in us this risk scoring that we do and technological advantages that we throw at this problem, and they are actually connecting us to delta, to marriott and to other parts of the travel industry and are trying to broker how can we use some of our technological advantage with folks who have been doing this for so long and can help feed this on both ways . we have been working closely with polaris on that. as for prosecutions, it has led to prosecutions and one thing i recall is there's a specific prosecutor known in trafficking circles in king county. this guy is like a genius. this is his life's mission. sounds like people know who i'm talking about, and we got together and started -- realized from my familiarity in counterterrorism and how we went after terrorists online that we should be attacking traffickers
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the same way. so, we've been starting to develop programs with this prosecutor about how you can use personas, and you can get on these chat rooms in a way that really haven't been done in the trafficking fight, and you can use incentivizing. he talks a lot about how it's not enough to just, you know, you obviously can't arrest the survivors, but you -- you can't arrest your way out of the problem, just like you can't kill your way out of a counterterrorism project. -- counterterrorism problem. you need to change behavior. he's doing amazing things working with us that reminds me so much of the same programs we were doing, and we're helping feed the information and technology into him who, again, is treating these chat rooms like, you know, it's going fishing in a sense, and it's picking them off one by one and turning them against each other. it's changing behavior. they have done amazing things like run ads on the platform that you think in a sense are positive in a sense for a
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trafficker, and it entices them and then all of a sudden up will come, you know, the picture of a little girl whose father can't go to her birthday party anymore because he's now a registered sex offender. not because he was the trafficker, but because he was the john. it's changing the behavior of the buyers and the sellers, and it has been wonderful as airbnb to be a part that have conversation and to use the expertise, you know, that we have from a counterterrorism perspective and law enforcement perspective and from a and alligence perspective technological perspective. >> so your question was about pushback from the private sector. this is something we faced early on in the hotel industry, you know, as i mentioned, carlson signed in 2004. it took seven years for another big company to sign. there was a lot of concern early on about liability and also about being associated with an ugly topic.
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but we actually -- i have to say we have substantially overcome that at least in the hospitality industry, that companies are now proudly talking begun the steps that they are taking. we used to be quite careful with companies about how they were detecting their work, their -- depicting their work, their commitment to the code of conduct, their recognizing that kids are being bought and sold on their properties. of it was quite a sort diplomatic dance we did. they now are very comfortable talking about it because now they know they are actually putting in place the accepts -- putting in place the steps that they have to put in place, and it's really quite gratifying to see. we don't get pushback from the hospitality industry so much anymore. and as for the airline industry it's actually been a little bit more difficult. maybe nancy can talk about that. while the two big companies have signed on, the others haven't, and i don't know as much what's behind that. it doesn't mean that they are
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not taking steps, but we have seen that in the hospitality industry. for a long time companies kept ensuring us they were taking the steps, but didn't want to sign it, goe, or as we put all the way. they wanted to sort of tiptoe around it, and now they are starting to feel more comfortable. so curious actually about what nancy says about the airline industry. nancy: thank you, carol. i agree with everything that you've said. it's beginning to change. i reached out again to every major airline in the united states and only one responded to me. to share with me their success stories, only delta and american signed on. i'm a legacy american airlines flight attendant, and nothing. they are afraid to step out, even though our survivor, who is an american airlines flight attendant is being highlighted in bangkok and in geneva, nothing.
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so, one idea i had was if the united states would join the international campaign for human trafficking called the blue heart campaign which we would coordinate with the blue campaign, which is just an easy way for an airline to -- maybe they are afraid to develop the marketing materials or afraid of making a fool of themselves, make it fun to doit. mira sorvino is the goodwillambassador for the blue heart campaign. that is a way to push them in that direction and i'm excited to work with airbnband on the new technology. we got a standingovation at interpol conference inboth albania anddubai about the encrypted app that we've developed thatgoes directly to law enforcementand
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geo locates you, and iwould love to coordinatewith everybody working on technology and uber as well from we're exciting to work with uber andthe hospitality industry in guatemalanext month. we still have a ways to go. we need to push the companiesto do the right thing. they are alittle nervous still. it is moving but slowly. i'm just going to hopin on the airline industry. one of the things that we do have with the blue campaignis the blue lightning initiative -- and we have been able to highlight and train 70,000 airline personnelin the united states, and this is one of the things that we, you know, have been able to geton there. i do agree there is still work to be donein the field and there is, youknow, awareness and education is always a good thingto have and the more we know the better off we are, butwe're working within the airline parameters, anddo i know that's part of the federal funding andthe faa reauthorization actthat training is mandated and that we are working with them.
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i do agree we do have morework to do, but with that being said i know with the blue campaign and blue lightning we've already done around 70,000 personnel. >> yes. to answer your question howdo they do it? well, there's many ways they do it, but we definitelyencourage them safety first, so a lot of times we'll encourage them to call 911 but it meansseparating yourself from the scene and then calling 911, or, again, if they don't know exactly what's going on and they justhave your institution or they are seeing some of thesigns, they can call the nationalhotline and we encourage them to call the national hotline. to further answer that question how they do it i'll give you three examplesof how they have done it, because i think these are greatexample and
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they showcase other things. we are an uber driver in sacramento, california, providing a trip. two adult women ordered a trip tothe hotel than the driver was a trafficker andhad a16-year-old individual signature and as they were driving her to the hotel they were coaching her about what todo, how to take the moneyfrom the person who how the her and as he got to the hotel. he let them out and pulled a little bit away fromthe hotel and he calledpolice. you ask about response. the police got there and they were able to arrestboth of the traffickers who is had ordered that trip as well as arrest the personwho had purchased that girl, and sothat was a quickresponse. not only was herecognized by net mac with a courageaward, so the other componentis we need to valueand acknowledge those folks who are doing these things because they areheroes. those are community heroes so net macdid a greatjob valuing that person and wealso try to play a part, whatever it may be, fulfilling theneed and make surethat we value and honor that driver when they do intervene in a situation like that. another example of how they do it. we had a female uberdriver in philadelphia, and a trafficker had purchased
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an airlineflight on a national airline. flew her to festivaliawhere he -- flew her to philadelphia festivalia wherehe will ordered -- flew her to philadelphia where he will ordered an uber where he wasen route and was traveling to meet the person that bought her online. there's three components three , times there could have been an intervention. the female female uber driver was able to identify her as a victim of humantrafficking and was able to callpolice and provide her aid and helppolice make an arrest on the trafficker who had senther.
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another example of how theydo it is in phoenix, arizona, we had an uber driver who -- he was a retired marine. he had just lost hisjob and just -- just got a divorce, he so started driving for uber to make some money, and he was living in a hotel, and at that hotel there was a trafficker also living at that hotelwho approached him and said i would -- and hesaid are you an uber driver? and he said, well,i would like you to do some transportation for me and transport someof my girls and by theinformation that the fld received inall three of those cases he contacted the police. he contacted the phoenix police department, and they were able to use him in astick and he cooperated, and he wasin an undercover sting to catch those traffickers and put them behind bars. in all three of those cases there were arrests made so let me tell you theother components behind the scenes is we have a law enforcement outreach team that consists of local and federalretired police officers who go around the country, and theymeet with police departments as well as around the world to educate them on how policewith use our technology asevidence to hole -- to hold people accountable. that component is very important and it is accountability. it's important that we work with
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police and help them and not only having the evidence andthe information that they need, but to put these folks behind bars because that's where they belong for doing these types of things. so we do have a lawenforcement outreach team that also works hand in hand with thosedetectives on those investigations and gets them the information that they need. in the philadelphia case they were able to get the information of somebody who had orderedthat trip for that girland helped identify that trafficker,so that is an important component of he bindthe scenes of how they doingit and how they are suspectinglaw enforcement andmaking a case. thing?i say one more i just want to pitch another idea about what to do. when theterritoriality law was first passed, there's somekind of law or alert thatit's against the law to exploit a child in every country.
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and we've been seeking toget signage in u.s. airportsand other outgoing areas where all of the other warnings are posted that says something about it's also against the law to exploit children and citing the lawpitching that idea for along time, and i'm just pitching it for this crowd as well asjust something to think about it. >> i wanted to make one more comment real quickly about private sector. one action that -- thatany corporation cantaking is to for trafficking survivors.
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the airlines employ thousands of people that work as reservation agents, can work athome. many ofthese work fromhome and need to get this as afirst step. >> thank you for your response to that question. we're running out of time. two questions from the audience and the first from saber rock. >> good evening,everyone. my name is saberrock. i work for airline ambassador as a countrymanager, plus i'm subject matter expert fornato forces in afghanistan. so i have two questions, and one question for miss nancy. do you have anyconnection in afghanistan? do youhave plans to work forhuman trafficking in afghanistan because our military problem in of course
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have a lot of trouble? the taliban and ies areusing kids against our militaryforces, against u.s. military forces. they are using suicide bombers and using many different things so i brought that message. please answer that, and fromuber, miss nancy, a lot of the linguists. i was the senior linguist so 800 interpreters in afghanistan while i was working for general john allen as acultural adviser. the question is majority ofthe siv interpreters who came work by thegovernment game by siv and we have 11,000families of in term text and interpreters, 92% of the interpreters are drivinguber. why? because they didn't find any job, because they
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are the green card holder. number two, they are asking every day why the uberis not signing up or --or hiring us as anemployee? because they can buy house.they -- they can buy a house. they can feed their kidsor they can treat their family inafghanistan as well because their family is in danger in afghanistan, butthey cannot afford that much money that they make fromuber. the living in the united states is very expensive. they pay more than $1,000per month rent. thank you. -- rent. >> thank you. we are running out of time. and the next question. >> i just have a question for uber, and i think probablyall of us ride uber. i've talked a lot to my uber drivers and asked them abot trafficking and if they have ben trained and most of them kind stare, like no. how do i do it? and would i like to know and have everybody know likehow do you tell your uber driver is there aurl or what would they do to encourage usher drivers to
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get the training, because i thinkit's optional? >> to be honest with you i don't have a lot of backgroundor knowledge on that. what i will tellyou is that we were open to receiving information, learning and listening and open to doing better wherever that might be. i wish i had a better answer for you and i don't in that space. to answer your question about training andabout education for uberdrivers. i -- you know, the same thing. i ask when i get in the vehicle have youreceived the information about human trafficking? do you know anything abouthuman trafficking? and i'll find drivers that have not seen, it ori'll find drivers that just like i was inl.a. the other day who told mehe had received it and he was excited about receiving it because i love taking those stories back to my executives and the people who are making decisions around this to know that this is meaningful and it matters. so it is optional because, you
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our drivers are independent contractors and it's required as far as trainingbeing required. that's an employee/employer relationship o it makes it a little difficult. we're doing our best and trying to do betterand getting that information out in differentways so the way we'e doing it is through the in app technology and sendingthem through the app and trying to get themengage and go to the driver resource page. it lives 24/7 for riders. there's a section where riders can learn more information and we try to drive thatinformation at times, so wetry to drive themthrough tower in-apptechnology and finally get thumb tothat place. what's really excite begun that is we've seen fur times the engagement than we've seen with uber ice cream.
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it tells me that peoplewant this information and it's a good thing to make it available for them. we use our in-app technology and using driver initiation avepts and we're partnered with all the national partners and leaders in this space sowe invite them to those driver events aswell as local agents and local law enforcement to help educate our drivers and try tobring them to an event wherewe celebrate them and encourage them toll come in and hearmore about it. to be honest,we're work and listening with our partners,how can we do this, and thinking outside the box. how can we get the information to our drivers because we have millions ofeyes. there's millions ofairs and ears that can makean im product in thisspace. we're trying to find innovation i've ways of using ourtechnology and the old waysof inviting people with food and inviting and encouraging them to want to learn more about this, butwe're also using that technology that we have, just trying to think of
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creative ways to get that information to themand get them interested in it about learningmore. and saber o -- about learning more. >> and saber to your question, we know that,well, bolt forced child marriage and child terrorism, suicide bombers, are being recruited bythe taliban and isis, and we areplanning a training at kabul airport where thefirst ngo to move inthere and bring this issue public to empower women and awareness. and we're looking forward to working onthat with you. >> we are out of time. thank you all forbeing here today and sharing with usyour expertise and what you do every day to keep our air and streets and hotels and homes free from human trafficking. thanking everyone here. [applause] if you missed any part of this video recording of the
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transcript and the testimonies will be available on the website. thank you so much for joining us today. [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2017] >> here is a look at our live coverage tuesday. on c-span, the house is back at 10:00 eastern for general speeches with legislative business at noon. a small business cyber security bill and a resolution that would
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overturn the consumer financial protection bureau auto financing rule. on c-span2, the senate energy and resources committee takes a look at the state of puerto rico's electric grid. at 2:30, the senate returns to continue debate on a failed circuit court of appeals nominee nation. on c-span3, warmer vice president joe biden is among the speakers in the morning long discussion about the economy and the middle class. that is followed by senate appropriations subcommittee hearing in the afternoon with homeland security secretary kirstjen nielsen. testifying on the 2019 budget proposal for her department. >> next monday on "landmark cases, regions of university of california, a white male was twice rejected admission to the university of california medical school. he claimed he was passed over in
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favor of less qualified minority applicants into the university of california to court. decision struck down the admissions program and upheld the constitutionality of affirmative action under the 14th amendment. the generalrved as in the obama administration and a professor at georgetown law center, a libertarian and original constitutional legal scholar. watch "landmark cases" x-men the onset -- next monday on c-span. follow us at c-span. we have resources on our website for background on each case. a link to the national constitution center's and the atdmark case's podcast cases.
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