February 22nd is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day in Canada, a time to show compassion and support for survivors and reaffirm a commitment to eliminating human trafficking in our communities. In 2022, there were 528 police reported incidents of human trafficking in Canada, but most incidents go unreported, and the true number of cases and victims is unknown.

Human traffickers prey on vulnerable people and Alberta’s government is providing funding for community-led initiatives to combat human trafficking in our province. Through this $3.5 million, 20 community organizations will be able to enhance the services they provide on the front lines, build operational capacity so they can help more people, and reach vulnerable populations including youth, Indigenous and newcomers.

“Human trafficking is an unthinkable crime that denies a person their safety, freedom and individuality. Fighting this heinous crime is a key priority for Alberta’s government. The funding we’ve announced will be used by community organizations and service providers to increase and strengthen wraparound supports for survivors, break the cycle of recidivism for victims and support efforts to uproot the criminal networks profiting from the cruelty they inflict on Albertans.”

Mike Ellis, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services

Each of the 20 organizations receiving funding will use their knowledge and expertise to help ensure that resources are allocated where they will have the greatest impact. It is crucial that government is able to work with those on the front lines as they are working directly with those who are being, or have been, trafficked, while also working to prevent others from being victimized.

“This funding will allow us to increase the capacity within our program and decrease our waitlist. Proactive initiatives like this from the Alberta Government will supports the urgent needs of survivors of sex trafficking.”

Theresa Jenkins, executive director, RESET Society of Calgary

“There isn’t a single agency in Alberta that can prevent or respond to human trafficking alone. This investment in ACT Alberta’s front-line services will have an enormous impact on our ability to support survivors of human trafficking on their path to safety, and to continue to partner with other critical agencies to provide a trauma-informed continuum of care.”

Kate Price, executive director, Action Coalition on Human Trafficking Alberta

"With the help of this grant from the Government of Alberta the Tsuut’ina Nation Police Service will create innovative initiatives to address human trafficking alongside and in collaboration with our youth, community members, and law enforcement partners designed specific to Indigenous communities."

Dawn-Lyn Blake, Tsuut’ina Nation Police Service

In addition to the funding being allocated, Alberta’s Government has also named Angela Adsit and Paul Brandt as the new co-chairs for the Alberta Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons board of directors.  In their leadership roles, Paul Brandt and Angela Adsit will provide survivor-centered and culturally relevant guidance to the board. In the coming months, they will collaborate with community partners to fill remaining board positions and staff operations.

"I am honoured to be an Indigenous voice as co-chair of the AOCTIP Governing Board. While human trafficking can affect anyone, over 50 per cent of trafficking victims in Canada are Indigenous despite only representing 4 per cent of the national population. Indigenous children in care are over-represented and incredibly vulnerable to being trafficked. These children are all our children, and we are stronger working together to protect and advocate on their behalf."

Angela Adsit, co-chair, Alberta Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons

“Trafficking is a violation of one’s most basic human rights, and leaves lives shattered, but awareness with action ends exploitation. I would like to thank the Government of Alberta for the continued prioritization and response to the issue of human trafficking. We truly are stronger together. As co-chair of the AOCTIP Governing Board, I’m pleased to be a part of this unique “made in Alberta” approach to combatting human trafficking in Canada.”

Paul Brandt, co-chair, Alberta Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons

Announced in response to recommendations made by the Alberta Human Trafficking Task Force, the Alberta Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons will help increase awareness of human as a serious, province-wide issue as well as support a coordinated approach to confronting it. Thanks to the dedication of partners REACH Edmonton, Native Counseling Services of Alberta and #NotInMyCity, the office is well on its way to fulfilling its intended role as a source of support and guidance for effective survivor-centered service delivery and community coordination throughout the province.

Quick facts

  • Anti-human trafficking community organizations receiving government funding include:
    • ALERT
    • Centre to End All Sexual Exploitation (CEASE)
    • RESET Society of Calgary
    • Waypoints
    • Action Coalition on Human Trafficking Alberta (ACT Alberta)
    • Catholic Social Services
    • HER Victory
    • #NotInMyCity
    • Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre
    • Community Response Model (Hull Services)
    • Alberta Human Trafficking Provincial Network
    • #NotInMyCity – The Maddison Sessions
    • Edmonton Multicultural Health Brokers
    • Kainai Transition Centre Society
    • Metis Child & Family Services Society
    • Native Counselling Services of Alberta
    • Creating Hope Society of Alberta
    • Wood Buffalo Wellness Society
    • Tsuut'ina Nation Police Service
    • Policy Wise – HT Data Portal
    • Calgary Centre for Newcomers
  • In October 2022, Alberta’s government committed more than $20 million in new funds over four years to step up the fight against human trafficking.
  • Those interested in learning more about human trafficking, how to recognize it, and how to help can take #NotInMyCity’s 30-minute online e-learning course “Mobilizing Communities to Disrupt Sexual Exploitation and Sex Trafficking in Canada.”

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