More than 200 Kansas professionals will learn how to spot the signs of human trafficking this week at a conference.
The Human Trafficking Conference, which begins Tuesday at the Manhattan Conference Center, 410 South, 3rd St., will provide two days of training and discussion on human trafficking. lU.S. Attorney Stephen McAllister will open the event at 8 a.m. with a speech. McAllister said he hopes that this gathering can provide insight and build a deeper knowledge of how to stop human trafficking.
"What we all have in common is our desire to prevent human trafficking, to prosecute traffickers and to help survivors reclaim their lives and their freedom," McAllister said.
The keynote speaker for Tuesdays events will be Peter Qualliontine of King County Washington. Qualliontine, the director of Men's Accountability, Organization for Prostitution Survivors, will speak about his work with men who buy sex in a ten week sex-buyer intervention program called 'Stopping Sexual Exploitation: A Program for Men.'
The main goal of the two day conference is to inform every day workers of warning signs of a person being trafficked and how to approach that situation.
"The presentation is aimed at people who are more likely than the average person to encounter people that are being trafficked," Jim Cross, spokesman for U.S. Attorney of Kansas, said. "It can make a lot of difference if they are able to recognize trafficking when they see and if they can treat it with basic principals."
One of the most common forms of human trafficking that the state of Kansas faces is sex trafficking, Cross said.
"This is a very large issue, a national problem that we have here in Kansas. The form we see most often is sex trafficking through prostitution," Cross said. "Women and sometimes girls are forced, tricked, or bullied into performing prostitution."
This event is open to the public with a $50 admission fee. The U.S. Attorneys office is co-sponsoring the event with the Kansas Attorney General's Office, the Riley county Attorney's Office, the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center and the Wichita State Midwest Criminal Justice Institute.