Human Trafficking 101
Author: Steve Huston  

SAVE THE DATE! The Mamrelund Lutheran Church (4085 Lutheran Church Road; Kent City, MI 49330) will be hosting a Human Trafficking Forum on Sunday, May 5, 2019 from 2 PM – 4 PM.

Human trafficking is modern-day slavery. “According to U.S. federal law, human trafficking is defined as anyone of any age being forced or deceived into providing commercial sex acts or labor of any kind. No borders have to be crossed, no smuggling has to happen, and it doesn’t only happen in third-world countries. It happens everywhere.” (from the Kalamazoo Anti-Human Trafficking Coalition website)

How much do you know about human trafficking? Did you know that the state of Michigan is ranked number two when it comes to this heinous crime? Are you aware that human trafficking isn’t limited to specific ages, gender, or ethnicities? That’s right; the victims of this crime are male and female, very young to old, and the perpetrators don’t care what color you are or where you’re from. Financial standing isn’t always a factor either.

One more fact: Only 4 of every 1,000 human trafficking victims are identified, according to statistics from the University of Michigan Law School’s Human Trafficking Clinic. Everyone needs to become more aware of this prevalent and ever-growing crime so that we can both help to protect our loved ones and recognize someone else who might be in trouble. If you can attend this event on Sunday, May 5 from 2 PM to 4 PM, I urge you to do so.

Sara Morely-LaCroix, founder and director of the Kalamazoo Anti-Human Trafficking Coalition (KAHTC) will be giving a presentation on Human Trafficking 101.” Their website is a treasure trove of information; check it out.

After the presentation there will be a short film. Trafficking survivor and creator of “Sacred Beginnings Outreach,” Leslie King, will be next on the program. Sacred Beginnings Outreach is a survivor led organization that is “uniquely equipped to reach and rescue women enslaved in exploitation/trafficking.”

This event will also provide a display and information by “WAR” - Women At Risk.

If you’d like more information about this event or want to volunteer call the Mamrelund Church office at (616) 887-8873 or email them at

This is sure to be an informative afternoon and of great benefit. We dare not turn a blind eye to those image bearers of God who are in desperate need. Even if you can’t attend this event, we can all do something. One of the several suggestions from the KAHTC website was this: “Live Justly: Don’t buy sex. Critically examine your views on women, sex, and exploitation. We encourage you to be more aware of the origins of your food, clothes, and electronics. Buy fair trade and survivor-made products. Learn more about your favorite products and potential ethical conflicts by using the Buycott app.

To support our efforts please click here or mail your gift to American Decency Association (ADA), PO Box 202, Fremont, MI 49412. 

 American Decency Association is a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.

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