Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Nomi Network in Washington, DC


Human trafficking is a global epidemic that affects the lives of over 27 million people who are held at the mercy of their owners. The average citizen is not aware of this modern day atrocity. Nomi Network aims to raise awareness through hosting and participating in speaking engagements throughout the United States. Nomi Network has been invited to participate in several events and panel discussions from California to Louisiana to Washington D.C. On July 22, 2010, Supei Liu represented Nomi Network in a “What can we do to combat sex trafficking?” panel discussion, hosted by the Women of Global Action (DC Chapter).

Bethany Hoang, Director of the International Justice Mission Institute opened the discussion by sharing statistics on the extend of the problem and noting key drivers of sex trafficking. Andrea Powell, Executive Director of Fair Fund discussed sex trafficking from a local perspective, focusing primarily on the United States and Washington D.C. Our very own Supei Liu followed the discussion with her personal experience in Cambodia and the importance of market-based solutions. Candace Wheeler, President of Restoration Ministries spoke on rehabilitation, healing, and aftercare for survivors of sex-trafficking.

The event was attended by approximately 50 individuals who were extremely interested in asking questions and learning more about the issue, particularly about the best methods for combating demand. Nomi Network's work directly combats the demand for human trafficking on the micro-level and macro-level by providing job security to survivors and at-risk women so that they will not fall back into the sex trade, thereby decreasing the supply that feeds the demand. We partner with organizations that focus on demand while we focus on the supply and decreasing the vulnerabilities of individuals who are vulnerable to sex trafficking. In Cambodia, Nomi Network works with women to increase their skill and capacity to secure long-term jobs. Sukha’s story, which shows the successful emergence of a woman formerly victimized by the sex trade industry, is an example of how thoughtfully investing in the lives of women can - and does - work.

To increase the demand for product made by survivors, Nomi Network had the opportunity to display our Spring Collection tote bags at the event. Our bags were a huge hit! Participants were able to take immediate action by using their purchasing power to invest in the lives of survivors of sex trafficking.

~By Diana Mao

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