The two organizations are working together to help airport staff identify the signs and take action
Human trafficking and sexual exploitation are the fastest growing crimes in Canada and are the second largest source of illegal income worldwide. In Canada, 21 per cent of trafficking victims are under the age of 18. While making up only 4 per cent of the country’s population, 50 percent of Canada’s trafficking victims are Indigenous people.
Founded by country superstar Paul Brandt, #NotInMyCity is a facilitative organization that is raising awareness and taking collective action to prevent, disrupt and end sexual exploitation and trafficking, focusing on children and youth. In the transport sector, #NotInMyCity has already formally collaborated with the Calgary International Airport, Edmonton International Airport, and the Alberta Motor Transport Association.
“We know that human trafficking victims pass through our airport, and we want to do everything we can to ensure the safety and well-being of all passengers and visitors,” says RJ Steenstra, President & CEO of Fort McMurray Airport Authority, “By working with #NotInMyCity, we are able to leverage the well-researched e-learning already in place, while adding enhanced screening tools and skills for our airport employees to use in their daily duties, staying vigilant and taking action when appropriate.”
It is anticipated that more than 57 direct and partner employees will participate in the e-learning program in the coming months, and it will be a mandatory component of security awareness training for all airport personnel with a role in the aviation security program in the future.
Says Paul Brandt, Founder of #NotInMyCity, “Creating awareness and providing education about human trafficking and sexual exploitation lets people recognize that these crimes are taking place here in Canada. By working with organizations such as the Fort McMurray Airport Authority, we have more people staying vigilant, and knowing what to do if they suspect a victim is travelling through their airport.”
According to the Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking, transportation corridors are frequently used by traffickers, and once a victim has been recruited, traffickers will often move them from city to city to maximize profits, access new markets and avoid competition. It also helps keep control of the victim why may not know where they are or how to get help, and it makes it easier for traffickers to evade detection by police. Victims of labor trafficking may also enter Canada by way of air travel, under the false promise of a job or education opportunity.
#NotInMyCity offers an interactive e-learning course for anyone interested in learning more about the issue of human trafficking and sexual exploitation in Canada. It was developed in collaboration with national and international thought leaders. Upon completion of the free 30-minute e-course, participants are awarded with a certificate. More than 84 per cent of participants have completed the course in just the past six months.
In Alberta, anyone can all 2-1-1 if they believe they witness or are experiencing human trafficking or sexual exploitation. If anyone is in immediate danger, it is recommended to call 9-1-1.
#NotInMyCity is a facilitative organization launched by Paul Brandt that is raising awareness and taking collective action to prevent, disrupt and end sexual exploitation and trafficking, focusing on children and youth. The #NotInMyCity movement is growing. We are working in alliance with key stakeholders, creating awareness, educating others and mobilizing a strategic, integrated plan to bring about transformational and sustainable change at all levels.
About The Fort McMurray Airport Authority
The Fort McMurray Airport Authority is an independent not-for-profit capital corporation that owns and operates Fort McMurray International Airport (YMM). FMAA operates like a local business, facilitating critical transportation services, creating local jobs, procuring local goods and services and offering commercial land leasing opportunities. All surplus revenue generated from commercial activities are reinvested back into airport operations and infrastructure to ensure compliance with safety, security, and environmental regulations.