According to the U.S. State Department, 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders every year. More than 70 percent are female and half are children. Albany played host to a conference on human trafficking Wednesday.
The event at the University at Albany’s downtown Milne Hall was co-hosted by the college's School of Social Welfare and the State Office of Children and Family Services. Its purpose: to raise awareness about human trafficking and increase knowledge among students and community members.
Student Lima James spearheaded the conference. Speakers included Lynn Baniak, policy analyst at the NYS Office of Children & Family Services; Christa Stewart, coordinator of Human Trafficking & Unaccompanied Children Programs, Bureau of Refugee & Immigrant Assistance, at the NYS Office of Temporary & Disability Assistance; and Lauren Pesso, director of the Human Trafficking Program at My Sisters’ Place.