|

SHARE US


Quick Links

Sign In


Forgot Password?

Not a member? Sign up now 

Lose something?

Enter Username or Email to reset.

Sign Up

Stop Human Trafficking - KCCD
single single-post postid-2684 single-format-standard _masterslider _msp_version_2.20.4 tribe-no-js full-width none cpcustomizer_off megamenu header1 unknown wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-4.11.1 vc_responsive
Stop Human Trafficking
stop human
  • codiepie
  • 18, March

Stop Human Trafficking

“There are more people enslaved today around the world than there were in the four hundred years of the trans-Atlantic slave trade combined,” reports Nikki Toyama-Szeto.
“In the United States, Asians and Pacific Islanders make up the largest group of those who are human trafficked.”

We are pleased to bring the second edition of Prophetic Voices: API Christian Perspectives on Church and Society focusing on human trafficking, the second largest and fastest growing criminal industry in the world. This past January was Human Trafficking Awareness Month. This weekend’s Super Bowl Weekend, unfortunately. has the highest volume for human and sex trafficking activities.

According to Nikki Toyama-Szeto, “There are more people enslaved today around the world than there were in the four hundred years of the trans-Atlantic slave trade combined.” Many people assume that human trafficking only happens in other countries, but the reality is that human trafficking is happening right here in the United States. Many are underage girls often average age of 14 who are drugged, raped, tortured and beaten by their pimps to prevent them from running away. Contrary to many who believe these individuals who are being trafficked are perpetrators, they are actually victims. Thankfully, there is a growing awareness including by the criminal justice system to treat them rightfully as victims and survivors. However, there is still much work to be done.

In the United States, Asians and Pacific Islanders make up the largest group of those who are human trafficked. In addition, so many kids coming out of the foster care system end up also being trafficked. As API Christians, we have a moral and vested responsibility to stop human trafficking.

In this issue of Prophetic Voices, we are pleased to highlight the great work of API faith and community leaders who are working on behalf of or with human trafficking victims and survivors including Nikki Toyama-Szeto of International Justice Mission, Brian Wo, Founder of Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition, Jaida Im of Freedom House, P.W. Gopal of the Hundred Movement, Pastors John Bae of New Creation Fellowship and Pastor Peter Ong of King’s Cross Church whose congregations are partnering with Restore NYC, an anti-trafficking organization. We also are pleased to feature Assemblymember Ron Kim of New York whose area includes Flushing, a human trafficking capital of the world.

A special shout out to Vanessa Yee, Chris Tsou, and Heidi Shin for producing the videos.

Our prayer is that this issue on human trafficking will lead to greater prayer, repentance, advocacy and service for the victims.

Peace,

Dr. Russell Jeung, San Francisco State University & Hyepin Im, KCCD President
Executive Editors

Stop Human Trafficking
Human Trafficking Facts

Human trafficking, as defined by the United Nations, has five components: recruitment, coercion, forced labor, systems of bondage, and fraud. The U.S. government estimates 600,000 to 800,000 persons are trafficked across borders each year, but the International Labor Organization estimates 20.9 million are trafficked globally. Asians and Pacific Islanders compose the largest group, 80% of whom are girls and women, trafficked in the United States.

Stop Human Trafficking
Asian Pacific Islanders – Largest Racial Group Trafficked
in the US
Stop Human Trafficking
Stop Human Trafficking
“The Asian Face of Modern-Day Slavery”
“Looking at Injustice from a Position of Power: Giving Voice to the Voiceless”
“Asian Pacific Islander Christians occupy a unique place in the conversations about trafficking.”
Stop Human Trafficking

Nikki Toyama-Szeto 

Senior Director, International Justice Mission

Nikki Toyama-Szeto is a Vice President of Global Strategies for Christian Engagement at the International Justice Mission (IJM) in Washington DC to ignite a passion of biblical justice among the global church. Prior to working for IJM, she served on Intervarsity Christian Fellowship Staff, including directing the Urbana Student Missions Convention. She had given up a very lucrative engineering position in order to pursue God’s ministry.

“Asian Pacific Islander Christians occupy a unique place in the conversations about trafficking. Fueled by a Christian conviction, and informed by shared experiences, Asian American Christians can play a significant role in helping to fight this injustice. API Christians are part of the diaspora of countries where the majority of those in slavery today are located.”

“The inherent and equal value of every human is something that is both understood intellectually from a study of scriptures and is also near to the hearts of Asian American Christians. Whether it’s the cry of the Chinese laborers working the railroads, the under the table wage earners, and undocumented laborers, Asian Americans know what it is like to be reduced to our commercial contributions, not be seen as image-bearers. In the American media, the perpetuation of an oriental exoticism of API women furthers this devaluation – a reduction of a people to sexual objectification.”
“In Isaiah and other books, you see very clearly God’s heart for those who are enslaved and in bondage…He wants to bring freedom to the captives. I would love to see the API community stand up and give their voice to this issue with the same passion and intensity that we do with other areas of our lives.”

“We are to speak out against those who are abusing their power.”
Stop Human Trafficking

Brian Wo

Director of Partnerships, Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition

Brian Wo is Executive Director of the Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition (BAATC), which equips individuals and groups with best practices to combat human trafficking in the San Francisco Bay Area. Before co-founding BAATC, he spent sixteen years in vocational ministry, including 12 years as Associate Pastor of Grace Community Covenant Church. Like Nikki, he was an engineer before pursuing full-time ministry.

“The API community has experienced its own type of marginalization, injustice and exploitation. The API church has an unique, specific voice to offer to the conversation [about human trafficking]. As a man, I realize that I’m looking at injustice from a position of power and that there are number of ways that men are called to do something about that… We are to speak out against those who are abusing their power.”

“We must start having honest conversations…Our faith-based organizations and nonprofit groups should play a more critical role in engaging families and particularly young men to better address our structural and societal failures in preventing human trafficking.”
Stop Human Trafficking

Ron Kim

Assemblymember, New York State Assembly, 40th District

Assemblymember Ron Kim is the first and only Korean-American elected official in New York. His ability to cross over and communicate with different communities encompassing all generations is something that Flushing, as one of the most diverse areas in the nation, desperately needs.

“We must come together as a community to address the ongoing exploitation of women around the world. We can continue to take more drastic and punitive measures to punish those who traffic vulnerable females but more importantly, we must start having honest conversations at the local level about the market demands that ultimately drive this illegal industry. Our faith-based organizations and nonprofit groups should play a more critical role in engaging families and particularly young men to better address our structural and societal failures in preventing human trafficking.”

“Educating a church on human trafficking takes hours but the real question lie in that church’s ability to listen and act on its convictions…”
Stop Human Trafficking

P.W. Gopal

Singer/Songwriter, Abolitionist

P.W. Gopal is the founder of the Hundred Movement, born out of a vision to rescue and restore 100 women and children in the US sex trade. It aims to build an integrated system where a victim can be supported through long-term care. With roots from Columbus, Ohio, PW Gopal is a full-time musician who formerly worked with Young Life.
“In 2008, while working on a film about an orphanage in Sri Lanka, we were told that one of the girls was sold by her mother to a man in India. That event sparked my work here in the U.S. to understand human trafficking.”

“As an Asian, specifically from a third world South Asian country, I have seen what happens to people who have little opportunity and education. These cycles can only have a downward draft. I want all Asians to give of themselves to make sure that every person in their community enjoy the same rights to health, dignity and safety.”
“As a Christian, my understanding is that all followers of Christ need to be concerned with the issue of human trafficking and its momentum in the American community. It is mandated by our Scriptures to ‘lay down our lives for our friends (John 15), to live the Gospel out with the poor and broken hearted (Isaiah 61)…”

“Educating a church on human trafficking takes hours but the real question lies in that church’s ability to listen and act on its convictions…”

“They have estimated that there are between 6,000 and 8,000 massage parlors in this country that are not only involved in illegal prostitution, but sex trafficking.”
Stop Human Trafficking

Peter Ong

Church Planter, King’s Cross Church

Peter Ong grew up in Queens as a child of immigrant parents. Currently, he is pastor of King’s Cross Church in downtown Flushing with Living Faith Community Church (PCA) He attended New York University and worked in the Asian American non-profit sector for five years before being called to full-time youth ministry. His church is partnering with Restore NYC to address human trafficking.

“We learned that the huge, systemic issue of human trafficking was rampant in our communities. They have estimated that there are between 6,000 and 8,000 massage parlors in this country that are not only involved in illegal prostitution, but sex trafficking. We discovered that sex trafficking was prevalent among the Asian American circles.”

“As a church, we wanted to educate our community that so many of the massage businesses were perpetrators of sex trafficking…We found that most people didn’t know this problem existed. Also, some of our church men have since confessed to using these massage parlors for sexual favors and didn’t realize their complicity in trafficking women.We cannot tackle the whole issue, but rather serve the people who are around this issue.”

“Restore NYC, an anti-trafficking agency, is putting together a strategy to identify these ‘commercial front brothels, close them down, and bring care to victims.’ Given our church demographic makeup and geographic presence, we believe that we can effectively (and safely) utilize volunteers who want to help in this area.”

“When we got here to Queens, we learned that Queens has the highest rates of sex trafficking in the whole world! It was time to make headway in being a presence in our city and doing what we can for the victims coming to the city.”
Stop Human Trafficking

John Bae

Lead Pastor, New Creation Fellowship Church, Bay Area Anti-Trafficking Coalition

Pastor John has been the pastor of New Creation Fellowship for the past 6 years. He is passionate about disciplining men and women towards maturing in the gospel in every area of life for the good of NYC and the world. The church recently started a partnership with Restore NYC to address human trafficking.

“When I was at Westminster Seminary, I came under the influence of professors who convinced me of how central social justice and mercy were to the Christian life…When we got here to Queens, we learned that Queens has the highest rates of sex trafficking in the whole world!”

“As parents of three young children, two of them girls, we felt our natural parental instinct to protect them was being directed to these children as well. There is something about parenthood that compels you to respond to any child in desperate need. It’s something we can be a part of alleviating. With the opportunities that God was giving us, it was time to make headway in being a presence in our city and doing what we can for the victims coming to the city.”

“Trafficking is a reality in our community whether you want to face it or not. We need churches to speak up about this issue to break the shame and denial and help those who are trafficked.”
Stop Human Trafficking

Jaida Im

Founder/Executive Director, Freedom House

Jaida Im founded the Freedom House, a non-profit providing housing and services to survivors of trafficking in 2010. Prior to directing Freedom House, she was a pharmacist but had suffered from debilitating migraines. After a miraculous healing, she started Freedom House as a way to show love to others.

“The mission of our shelter is to help trafficked women recover and become self-sufficient…One of our Asian shelter residents was locked up in a shed after working 15-16 hours a day. That’s happening in the United States! How are they ever going to recover? They need people who can help them recover from this, not just rescue them. For me, this mission is my passion and part of my personal story.”

“The main thing Asian women face toward recovery is the language barrier…They don’t trust anyone because they have been exloited and a lot of them experience Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. We need to find advocates who can translate for them. “

“API churches can do a lot. Trafficking is a reality in our community whether you want to face it or not. We need churches to speak up about this issue to break the shame and denial and help those who are trafficked.”

Post A Comment