S.O.A.P Up the Arnold

We often see headlines that claim a rise in human trafficking around major sporting events. Although this may be true, it is important to remember that human trafficking happens every day and we need to be more aware. 

The S.O.A.P Project (Save Our Adolescents from Prostitution) was established in 2010 in response to the need for awareness and prevention of human trafficking. The organization’s work includes labeling bars of soap with the Human Trafficking Hotline and providing educational materials and local missing children information to surrounding hotels.

“The outreach efforts have had a significant impact. The Hotline doesn’t have a marketing budget, so we rely on efforts like [theirs] to get the Hotline information in front of the people who need it the most.”
— Polaris Project says of S.O.A.P.

Currently, S.O.A.P outreaches in over 17 states and 30 cities across the nation, and one of those cities includes Columbus, Ohio. For the past eight years, the organization has partnered with Columbus volunteers in an outreach called S.O.A.P Up the Arnold. The Arnold Sports Festival is the world’s largest annual multi-sport festival, which brings an estimated 200,000 fans to watch 22,000 athletes within a four-day span located in downtown. 

This year’s festival is from February 28th to March 3rd. It will be crucial to spread awareness and join the fight against human trafficking while hosting thousands of visitors. S.O.A.P Up the Arnold plans to partner with volunteers by labeling and delivering soaps to 150 Columbus hotels in one day. If you are interested in volunteering, mark your calendars for Saturday February 16th at 9:30 a.m. at Martin de Porres (2330 Airport Drive Columbus, Ohio).

Every day S.O.A.P. continues to fight human trafficking and find missing children around the country. Not only do they outreach to large events, they partner alongside of survivor retreats, support groups, Bible studies and businesses. There are many ways to be involved: volunteering at outreaches, donating soaps or adopting a motel– any type of partnership is valuable. Human trafficking is happening every day and it is essential that we become more aware and report anything suspicious to the National Human Trafficking Hotline Resource Center at 1-888-373-7888.

National & International Organizations

We have created this list in hopes that it offers you insight on what other anti-human trafficking organizations are doing throughout the country and across the world.

  • Free the Slaves: A growing global movement committed to ending human rights abuses

  • Free the Girls: Provides job opportunities to survivors of sex trafficking through second-hand clothing drives and sales

  • Stop Traffik: Preventing human trafficking through local abolitionist networks and global initiatives

  • Exodus Cry: A Chirst-centered organization commited to abolishing slavery through prevention, intervention, and holistic restoration of trafficking victims

  • Global Centurion: Fighting modern slavery by focusing on demand

Labor Trafficking

Where can I find traffick-free goods?

The best place to start is Google, along with our Ethical Shopping Guide. While each industry has it's own certification standards, terms such as Fair Trade Certified, Global Organic Textile Standard, and a general transparency in the production and distribution of goods are positive indicators. Ethical goods don't exploit labor, animals, or the environment at any point in the supply chain. We have too many favorites to list all of them here, but if you'd like a few great vendors to get you started, check out great companies we follow on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Here's a great article written by one of our volunteers about her realization that her shopping choices were contributing to trafficking, and how she went about changing those habits. It's a great place to start on your journey to living consciously. 

  • Free2Work: Learn how trafficking is linked to common consumer goods

Demand Reduction

We don’t exist to judge, and we know that the reasons men solicit are complex. Some men have told us that they don’t struggle at all with porn or sex addiction, but instead suffer from depression and loneliness. 

That’s why we wanted to share a list of resources in Central Ohio that may be able to help you while also reducing “the demand for prostitution and hence … the amount of human trafficking and sexual exploitation that occurs,” according to the Ohio Department of Public Safety’s John Schools Report.

  • Demand Forum: An online resource bank with demand reduction materials

  • Demand Abolition: Research, information, and publications

  • Covenant Eyes: Anti-pornography software and resources from a Christian perspective

  • Fight the New Drug: Raising awareness on the harmful effects of pornography

  • Men Against the Trafficking of Others: Through the use of media and an educational strategy directed at males, MATTOO exposes the reality of sex trafficking

  • Ohio Sex Addicts Anonymous : A fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other so they may overcome their sexual addiction and help others recover from sexual addiction or dependency

  • Counseling Resources: If you are concerned that you may be experiencing an addiction or depression, here are some potentially helpful resources

Reduce Demand Resources

The list below is not comprehensive and does not address every man’s need, but please consider the following resources:

  1. Elizabeth Miller, LISW, LLC, and teacher at the Reduce Demand class: Elizabeth is a graduate of the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland. She specializes in relationship-based therapy and invests the time to resolve past trauma and understand its impact on current circumstances. Contact Elizabeth at 614-844-6886, Ext. 202 or visit her website.

  2. Bela Koe-Krompecher, LISW-S, LICDC, and teacher at the Reduce Demand class: Bela is a clinical director at the Downtown YMCA, where he works with homeless and at-risk homeless males. He has helped men and women with addictions and mental illnesses for 10 years. Bela is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University and Capital University and is a guest lecturer at the College of Social Work at The Ohio State University. Contact Bela here.

  3. Joel Franck, LPC, and She Has A Name volunteer: Joel received his Masters in Clinical Counseling from Ashland Theological Seminary. He works with individuals who are struggling with identity issues, life transitions, ADHD, self-worth, addictions, relationship issues, abuse, anger, anxiety, commitment issues, communication problems and spiritual issues. Contact Joel.

  4. Lucinda Bolinger, LPCC-S, and Certified Sexual Addictions Counselor: Lucinda has spent more than 10 years helping individuals and couples address issues related to relationships damaged by sexual infidelity, sexual compulsions and other non-chemical addictions. She offers group education and group psychotherapy to adults either struggling with a sexual addiction or adults in a relationship with someone battling a sexual addiction. Contact Lucinda or learn more at her website.

  5. Tim Stauffer, MA, LPCC and Certified Sexual Recovery Therapist: Tim counsels people in the Columbus area who are struggling with a wide range of mental, emotional, behavioral and spiritual issues, including sexual addictions, couples’ issues, diagnosis and treatment of mental and emotional disorders, anxiety and depression, family issues, communication issues, anger and stress management. Contact Tim at 614-949-6227, or learn more at his website.

  6. Mark McCarthy, LPCC-S and MA in Biblical Counseling from Grace Theological Seminary: Mark has 25 years of experience as a Christian therapist, who also brings the value of his own transformation from sexual brokenness to integrity and freedom. He was married for 28 years before sexual addiction ended his marriage and career. For three years Mark worked hard on recovery, and God brought both transformation in his life and restoration with his family. Mark and his wife have since remarried, his children have worked through a process of forgiveness, and his counseling license has been re-instated. He works with all men’s issues, but specializes in sexual integrity. Contact Mark or learn more at his website.

  7. 180 Recover: John Doyel founded 180 Recover in 2009 as a ministry of Vineyard Church of Columbus. It exists to help men who struggle with sexual addictions find healing through Jesus and the Holy Spirit. This group is for those who make attending a priority, participate in the teachings, openly share in the small groups and do the assigned work during the week. Contact John or learn more at his website.

For more information, please contact She Has A Name Demand Reduction Coordinator Christopher Stollar at 541-206-2245 or via email. You can also contact former Franklin County Municipal Court Judge Scott VanDerKarr at 614-579-8708 or via email. 

Books and Movies

We are helpless in the face of such a complex issue without first equipping ourselves with the information necessary to understand context. After collaborating with staff and volunteers, we were able to create a great list of resources to give to our SHAN community. If you have any suggestions, please let us know. We love to learn along side with you!

Books

Movies

Human Trafficking and the Fashion Industry

Original post date is August 29, 2016

Earlier this year, a couple friends launched an ethical fashion brand based here in Columbus called Novel Garments. During the brand launch I learned about the evils of the fast fashion industry and how these are deeply intertwined with labor trafficking. I heard stories about women who were enslaved in their work to make clothes for people like me. To make the clothes I was wearing at that very moment. It stunned me.

If you knew how your clothes were made, would you still buy them?
— Slow Fashion by Safia Minney

Up until earlier this year, I thought I had been doing pretty well in terms of living justly. I had been actively praying against sex trafficking, encouraging the survivors that I’d met, etc. I had not been pimping out women, encouraging porn viewership, or commending the perversion of sex! So, don’t look at me, right?! Except I WAS buying clothes and throwing them away as quickly as you could turn around. My decisions fuel a form of trafficking, colloquially referred to as fast fashion, that enslaves millions of people around the world, and I was blind to that.  I was blind to the fact that my lifestyle was costing garment workers their livelihood.

What exactly are garment production workers robbed of by working in this industry?

First and foremost, safety. Large factories in East/South/Southeast Asia (where much, if not most, Western countries outsource their production to) often only have one guarded (yes, an armed guard) entrance for an extremely crowded workspace and barred windows. If there was ever a fire, how would the hundreds or even thousands of workers get out? Since 1990, more than 400 workers have died and several thousand more have been wounded in 50 major factory fires in Bangladesh alone¹. Secondly, basic physical and emotional needs are being ignored and even violated. Workers are given nearly impossible production quotas; some have to complete up to 100 pieces an hour or they are given the ultimatum of losing their jobs or being abused physically/sexually/emotionally. Not to mention that bathroom breaks are monitored. Many can only get two bathroom breaks in a 16-18 hour work day seven days a week.

There are oppressive components, really, in each step of the fashion supply chain. In the farming of cotton we see impossible demands placed on growers that forces them to turn to hazardous, health-damaging chemicals to keep up. In garment production, workers may only take home approximately $30 US dollars each month for 16 hour days, seven days a week¹. As I continue to learn about the industry, it becomes clear that it has to be reinvented from the ground up. And it’s obvious that I can’t do it all and neither can you.

So what do we do?

If you’re the next Olivia Palermo, or wearing a t-shirt with stains that pre-date the internet, we commit to and affect change through conscious consumerism.

Every time you spend money, you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want.”
— Anne Lappe

Ask thoughtful questions like: Where were my clothes made? What does buying this pair of jeans cost the planet? The persons who made them? Who can I contact to find out about my favorite brand’s labor practices? Are they ensuring that labor trafficking or child labor isn’t happening in their supply chain?

There’s a lot you can do on a practical, everyday basis to advocate for fair fashion. Here are just a few tips to start with:

  • Breakaway from throwaway culture by buying LESS - will you wear that dress at least 30 times?

  • Buy eco-friendly, organic fabrics

  • Buy fair trade, sustainable, ethical products

  • Recycle by thrifting and upcycling old clothes

  • Boycotting doesn’t necessarily solve the problem of fast fashion since there are millions employed by large fashion companies - instead put pressure on your favorite brands to be transparent about their laboring practices and push them to pay living wages. Use #whomademyclothes!

Resources