POULSBO — Break Free Kitsap 2013, the second-annual weeklong series of events focusing on the issue of human trafficking awareness, begins Jan. 22 and features public forums, documentaries, trainings and workshops, and a benefit concert.
The Break Free Kitsap Steering Committee was started by several local organizations and service clubs, including Scarlet Road, Not for Sale Kitsap, and Soroptimist clubs of Greater North Kitsap, Bremerton and Port Orchard.
According to the committee, human trafficking is the world’s third-largest crime, behind weapons sales and drug trafficking. Every 15 seconds worldwide, a victim is trafficked, according to www.polarisproject.org/human-trafficking/overview.
The United Nations’ Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons defines human trafficking as “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation.”
“Exploitation” includes “the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.”
Break Free Kitsap 2013 events are free and open to the public.
— Jan. 22, 5:30-7 p.m.: “Prostitution: Never a Choice,” Sheridan Park Recreation Center, 680 Lebo Blvd., Bremerton. Speaker: Dr. Debra Boyer, cultural anthropologist with 25 years experience as the principal investigator of studies on urban street cultures, runaway and homeless youth, child sexual abuse and trauma, sexually exploited adolescents, adolescent pregnancy, and women’s reproductive health. Sponsor: Soroptimist International Greater Bremerton.
— Jan. 23, 5-8 p.m.: Human Trafficking Awareness and Education presentation and documentary feature film, Poulsbo City Hall Council Chambers. Agenda: Detective Harry James, Seattle Police Department Innocence Lost Task Force; human trafficking updates from Rescue & Restore Coalition and Shared Hope International; Internet safety for children and parents; and the film “Your American Teen,” about the sexual exploitation of teenage girls in the Northwest. Sponsors: Soroptimist International of Greater North Kitsap, North Kitsap Optimist Club, Peninsula Lighthouse Ministries, DEF Productions.
— Jan. 23, 7 p.m.: “Your American Teen,” South Kitsap High School, 425 Mitchell Ave., Port Orchard. Sponsor: Soroptimist International Port Orchard.
— Jan. 24, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Mental Health Service Provider Training, Kitsap Mental Health, 5455 Almira Drive NE, Bremerton. Specialized training for service providers, social workers and counselors, on serving and identifying survivors of the sex trafficking industry. Sponsor: Scarlet Road .
— Jan. 26, 1-5 p.m.: Hope4Justice AWARE Workshop, “Understanding current effects of pornography on youth; Exposing risks of child trafficking in our local schools,” Silverdale Haselwood YMCA, 3909 NW Randall Way, Silverdale. Presented by Lynden Police Officer Don Glunt. Part 1: Illusions, an interactive discussion about pornography, including its addictive nature, progressive tendencies, and how to get help. Part 2: Deceptions, a guide on the risks of domestic minor sex trafficking with additional curriculum from Hope4Justice. Pre‐registration required. Sponsor: Not For Sale Kitsap.
— Jan. 26: Benefit Concert, Coffee Oasis, 822 Burwell St., Bremerton. Sponsor: Coffee Oasis.
— During the week: Documentary film “The Dark Side of Chocolate” will be shown on BKAT Comcast Channel 12 and WAVE Broadband Channel 3 on the following dates and times: Jan. 20, 9 p.m.; Jan. 24, 7 p.m.; Jan. 25, 9 a.m.; Jan. 26, 3 p.m. Sponsor: Not For Sale Kitsap.
Break Free Kitsap 2013 event information is available online or contact Bethany Lueders of Scarlet Road, (360) 908-7328 or firstname.lastname@example.org.