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Sudbury & Area Victim Services supports individuals who are victims of human trafficking

Taking a comprehensive and victim-centred approach to human trafficking

As a community-based non-profit organization, Sudbury & Area Victim Services (SAVS) provides free, confidential immediate crisis response, intervention, and prevention services, which are responsive to the needs of individuals, families and communities affected by crime and tragic circumstances.

SAVS works in partnership with local police, fire, EMS and other community agencies to ensure that victims have access to the most appropriate services. One area of focus for SAVS is assisting individuals who are victims of human trafficking (HT).

Fact: HT is the world’s fastest growing criminal enterprise. According to the International Labour Organization, in 2019, more than 41 million people worldwide were victims of modern slavery.

HT and sexual exploitation are distinct from sex work. HT is forced labour, domestic servitude, removal of organs and sexual exploitation. In the Sudbury area, the most common form of HT is sexual exploitation.

SAVS Anti Human Trafficking Coordinator Tiffany Pyoli York says, “SAVS is crucial to the provision of a comprehensive and victim-centred response to HT. Our agency seeks to minimize re-traumatization, empowering survivors to be engaged participants in the process, and providing survivors an opportunity to play a primary role in their healing journey.”

In October of 2017, $1.93 million was allocated to the 47 victim services sites across the province to allow victims of HT access to new services and benefits to help meet the immediate and long-term needs of survivors.

In 2018, SAVS spearheaded the ‘Know the Signs, Make the Call’ campaign to raise awareness and promote education around the topic of HT. “SAVS has obtained grants to collaborate with local agencies to facilitate holistic arts programs, life skills for victims, survivors and those at risk of being trafficked,” says Pyoli York.

Currently, SAVS is also working with all four local school boards on the Anti-Sex Trafficking Protocol to bring education, prevention and supports to all youth in the Sudbury area.

Funded by the Ministry of Child, Community and Social Services, the VQRP (Victim Quick Response Program) allows SAVS to offer supports and services to victims of HT. Supports include in person connection, advocacy and services such as counselling, moving and storage costs, transportation to safe accommodation, residential treatment, dental costs and tattoo/branding cover up and removal.

Need more information?

Call 705-522-6970 or email [email protected]. SAVS’s primary goal is to ensure that victimized persons receive immediate intervention, support and assistance with regard to their primary needs.