Imagining Freedom Culinary Tasting supports survivors of human trafficking
The Survive and Thrive Advocacy Center Board has rescheduled the Imagining Freedom Culinary Tasting and Marketplace for 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 10, at the FSU Turnbull Center. The event was originally scheduled for March but was rescheduled due to the coronavirus. This story originally included the March date.
2020欧洲杯正规平台Survive and Thrive Advocacy Center is hosting a unique culinary and shopping experience that showcases restaurants, caterers, farmers and retailers that are dedicated to slavery-free supply chains.
2020欧洲杯正规平台Tickets and sponsorships are available for Imagining Freedom Culinary Tasting and Marketplace, at the FSU Turnbull Center, 555 West Pensacola St. Guests will enjoy delicious culinary creations while shopping for baskets, pottery, jewelry and other ethically sourced items.
Florida ranks third in the nation for cases of human trafficking, often called modern-day slavery. Since 2018, STAC has assisted over 40 people who were trafficked or at serious risk, along with dozens more who were identified as extremely vulnerable. While sex trafficking is often in the news, labor trafficking can be less visible, although it exists in plain sight in restaurants, on farms and in neighborhood homes.
“There is no other event like Imagining Freedom where guests can experience these wonderful foods and products all in one location and learn about how our choices as consumers can prevent human trafficking,” said Robin Hassler Thompson, STAC executive director.
Food stations, coordinated by Susan Turner and Food Glorious Food, will feature produce, meats, cheeses and desserts, as well and beer and wine. Turner, owner and founder of Food Glorious Food, one of Tallahassee’s best-known restaurants, and a STAC Board member, transforms donated raw ingredients into a beautiful, eclectic menu.
Local Bluegrass band, Crossroad, will provide foot-tappin’ tunes for guests to enjoy as they shop. While Imagining Freedom is a light-hearted event, it has an important purpose.
“Our goal is to ensure that everyone understands what human trafficking is and to encourage people to ask questions at the grocery store, at restaurants and places where they shop,” said Turner. “By knowing where our food and other products come from, we can prevent trafficking by actively supporting businesses that are dedicated to ethical labor.”
STAC will also celebrate the Red Hills Small Farm Alliance, which recently adopted a statement against trafficking and is informing all of its farmers and producers about the issue.
The statement reads: “Red Hills Small Farm Alliance is committed to helping to eradicate human trafficking as defined in State of Florida and federal laws. We do not condone human trafficking and will not engage in this practice or knowingly work with suppliers who engage in these practices. Our producers are committed to practices that ensure that no human trafficking exists in their business operations. We will provide our producers and members with information on human trafficking to help carry out the terms of this statement of principles.”
2020欧洲杯正规平台“This is the first time that we know of that a farming organization in our region has adopted a statement like this to underscore their collective commitment to preventing trafficking,” Hassler Thompson said. “Red Hills members will be at Imagining Freedom to receive our thanks. They serve as a shining example for other businesses and organizations.”
Proceeds from Imagining Freedom will support STAC services and programs including direct assistance to sex and labor trafficking survivors of all ages and training for professionals and community members. Over the last three years, STAC educated more than 3,000 people, including all Leon County Sheriff’s Office road patrol, investigators and school resource officers, as well as personnel from eight county health departments and Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare.
A member of the National Human Trafficking Hotline, STAC maintains a directory of services for survivors on its website and partners with agencies, including the International Rescue Committee and the Big Bend Coalition Against Human Trafficking, and many area agencies to connect survivors to a wide network of resources. These including case management, housing, counseling, health care, and employment, education and legal assistance.
2020欧洲杯正规平台STAC offers free training from 1 to 3 p.m. on the third Friday of every month for anyone who would like to learn about trafficking and how to help. Sessions include facts and trends, as well as a specialized topic that changes each month.
“None of what STAC does would be possible without community support,” Hassler Thompson said. “We have to keep the momentum going. Human trafficking, and labor trafficking in particular, are vastly underreported. More survivors need us. Come to Imagining Freedom and learn what you can do.”
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If you suspect trafficking or need help
Call the National Human Trafficking Hotline, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year: 1-888-373-7888 or visit humantraffickinghotline.org.