November 13, 2013
Re: January 11 Human Trafficking Awareness Day
Mayor J. Christian Bollwage of Elizabeth, a Past President of your New Jersey League of Municipalities, has asked us to ask you to put your municipality on-record on the issue of human trafficking.
Human traffickers – modern day slave traders - prey on those most in need of society’s protection – the young, the poor, the innocent, the weak and the marginalized. Their victims are systematically separated from their families and other support structures. They are transported across local, state and national borders. They are, then, casually rented out to willing buyers and subjected to sexual and labor exploitation.
The first step to combatting this heinous violation of basic human rights and human dignity is to increase general awareness of what it is and how it works. Toward that end, Mayor Bollwage has issued a proclamation, declaring January 11, 2014 as “Human Trafficking Awareness Day” in the City of Elizabeth. You can access Mayor Bollwage’s Proclamation online. PDF is http://www.njslom.org/proclamations/Human-Trafficking-Awareness.pdf and Word is http://www.njslom.org/proclamations/Human-Trafficking-Awareness.docx
In May of this year, Governor Christie signed AJR-56, which was sponsored by Assembly Members Vainieri Huttle, Stender, Wagner, Quijano, Jasey, Angelini, Bramnick, Caputo, Giblin, Simon, McKeon, Wimberley, Chivukula, Mosquero and McHose and State Senators Buono, Scutari, Kean, Pou, Gill, Beck and Greenstein. The Resolution had been unanimously passed by both House. It marks January 11 of every year “Human Trafficking Awareness Day” in the State.
In order to promote ongoing education about the signs and consequences of human trafficking, to recognize and advance efforts to end human trafficking in all of its forms, and to encourage support for the victims of human trafficking throughout the State of New Jersey and across the world, we encourage all Mayors to join the City of Elizabeth and the State of New Jersey in this observance.
To learn more about the issue and what you can do, we invite you to join Acting Attorney General John Jay Hoffman at our Conference Session, “Human Trafficking: Awareness, Prevention, Deterrence & Coordination.” This will take place on Wednesday, November 20, from 10:45 a.m. until 12:00 Noon in Room 301 in Convention Hall.
Very truly yours,
William G. Dressel, Jr.