211 – Why Is There a Public-Private Partnership Advisory Council?

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The White House has officially announced  President Trump’s intent to appoint Dr. Sandra Morgan, the Director of the Global Center for Women and Justice (GCWJ), to a two-year term as a Member of the Public-Private Partnership Advisory Council to End Human Trafficking. Sandie and Dave Stachowiak discuss the purpose of the advisory council and what it means moving forward. 

Key Points

  • The Public-Private Partnership Advisory Council was established by Senate Bill 1312, a bipartisan legislative mandate of the reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA).
  • The Advisory Council ensures US government policies and programs use best practices in their victim prevention, rehabilitation and aftercare efforts.
  • Sandie is honored to join the Advisory Council and will advocate for victims and encourage a victim-centered, trauma-informed approach to national anti-trafficking efforts. 


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Dave [00:00:00] You’re listening to the Ending Human Trafficking podcast. This is episode number 211 – Why Is There a Public-Private Partnership Advisory Council?

Production Credits [00:00:11] Produced by Innovate Learning, Maximizing Human Potential.

Dave [00:00:32] Welcome to the Ending Human Trafficking Podcast. My name is Dave Stachowiak.

Sandie [00:00:38] And my name is Sandie Morgan.

Dave [00:00:40] And this is the show where we empower you to study the issues, be a voice, and make a difference in ending human trafficking. Sandie, I was in my email box a few days ago as I tend to be four or five hours a day, it seems like. And I pull up an email, which I had a little heads up on was coming. But here’s how the email starts, “The White House has officially announced President Trump’s intent to appoint Dr. Sandra Morgan, the director of the Global Center for Women and Justice, to a two-year term as a member of the Public-private Partnership Advisory Council to End Human Trafficking. The Public-private Partnership Advisory Council was established by Senate Bill 1312, a bipartisan legislative mandate of the reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. The Advisory Council ensures U.S. government policies and programs use best practices and their victim prevention, rehabilitation and aftercare programs. Dr. Sandra Morgan is recognized globally for her expertise in combating human trafficking and working to end violence against women and children. She brings together diverse stakeholders to collaborate effectively for research, education, and advocacy directly related to the exploitation of women and children. Her Ending Human Trafficking podcast has listeners in 92 countries and is now housed in the Library of Congress as a resource to practitioners and the public.” Sandie, I don’t know if I’m legit enough anymore to be on this episode with you. Congratulations.

Sandie [00:02:12] Thank you. Thank you. You know, it is such an honor to be invited to be part of this advisory council where I get to use the rich background, a lot I’ve learned through our listeners, all of our guests, our partners in our local community, in order to be part of a voice for change and for strengthening our victim centered, trauma informed approach to our own national anti-human trafficking efforts right here in the USA.

Dave [00:02:48] It’s really an amazing opportunity for you, for the Global Center for Women and Justice, most importantly for victims of trafficking, that this not only your involvement, but more importantly, that this has been formed and work together to bring people in partnership together. And I have so, many questions about it, Sandie, and you had given me a heads up that this may be coming up. Before we get into what it is, how did this happen? How did this come up for you that the White House reached out to, you know?

Sandie [00:03:17] I think it is a very old principle. I remember way back in our, Jean and my, college days, sitting in church one day and Dr. George O. Wood said he had a poem he wanted the entire community to learn. And he said, let’s start with the first verse and we’ll practice it. And he said, “plod on, plod on, plod on, plod on, plod on, plod on.” He said, “Now we can do the second verse if you want to plod on, plod on” and you get the drift. And so, the reason this happened isn’t because I was like a rising star. It’s because I’ve been doing this for a very, very long time. And along the way, I’ve incorporated other people in my journey, I’ve brought people together. But my own background in pediatric nursing was a great foundation. My leadership in my church, my opportunity to teach in an academic setting, and then to serve in my own local Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force. You bring all of those pieces together and you have just the right pieces, the convergence of those streams to be able to actually have something to input in an advisory council that is about public-private partnerships. We talk a lot at the Global Center about research, education, advocacy, and collaboration. And because we’re a small private university, bringing together those different parts of our community is a model of public-private partnerships. We always invite government and local entities into our Ensure Justice conference. Lately, we’ve been partnering with Orange County Department of Education. Ambassador John Richmond was our keynote speaker at Ensure Justice last year. Back in 2007, the policy advisor for the Trafficking in Persons Office in our State Department, Dr. Laura Letter, was our keynote speaker. So, we have a long history of building public-private partnerships.

Dave [00:05:58] As you look forward to the work with the advisory council, where do you see the opportunities both for you and the council for this to be really helpful to the work we’re doing in human trafficking?

Sandie [00:06:10] Well, I think how this is situated is a key piece of this. So, you read the announcement and it’s situated in the White House, and this was mandated by bipartisan legislation. And so, yes, back in 10th grade civics, we all learned that our government has three aspects for checks and balances. So, this is housed in the executive branch. And the advisory council, the question you have to ask is, well, who are we advising? We’re not advising just the executive branch, but this is an advisory council that will work with the presidential inner agency Human Trafficking Task Force, which was established, I’m sorry, I don’t have the actual year, but certainly a long time before the current administration. So, 15 federal agencies, and this right now we’re nine members, it can be eight to 14 according to the legislation, we’ll be working with the human trafficking leaders in each of those agencies. And most people think about homeland security, they think about health and human services. But part of the agencies include things like Department of Education, Department of Transportation. There are so, many opportunities to build stronger public-private partnerships across all 15 agencies.

Dave [00:07:48] You mentioned there’s nine people on the council now. What other kinds of leaders are on the console that you’ll be working with to really create this collaboration?

Sandie [00:07:57] Well, we’re just getting to know each other. And we come from all different regions, we have different backgrounds in public and private initiatives against human trafficking. But our common denominator is we care about ending human trafficking.

Dave [00:08:16] I had you as a guest on the Coaching Leaders podcast not that long ago, and we talked about overlapping networks. This is probably taking that now to a whole new level of opportunity and disability.

Sandie [00:08:28] Oh Dave, I am so, excited about that aspect.

Dave [00:08:30] What has you excited?

Sandie [00:08:32] Well, you look at 15 different networks, these different federal agencies and the opportunity for building stronger, overlapping networks, breaking down silos, helping Department of Transportation to have a stronger connection to health and human services, and the concern for unaccompanied minor refugees. These are all pieces that are all in place, we just need to break down the silos and create stronger interconnectivity.

Dave [00:09:06] The legislation that happened initially to establish this console, was the intention behind that to be able to pick up efficiencies and coordinate between agencies? Was that part of the hope that that would happen more naturally?

Sandie [00:09:21] Well, the legislation is pages long, but one of the primary aspects, from my perspective and my role in this, is to improve prevention and victim services. And many times, you know, we’ve talked before about the three P’s prevention, protection, prosecution. And we understand that prosecution is a very expensive P: the investigation, the trial, the incarceration. So, how are we building the other P’s, that prevention, the protection? How are we building partnership and how are we building policy? Because we passed legislation, then how do we get it at the community level? For instance, when we think about the Department of Labor as the reauthorization in 2008 has to produce a list of products that are made with slave labor that come into our country. So, building that into our understanding and then engaging the community. So, a public-private partnership might look like our Live2Free team using the Department of Labor app, Toil and Sweat, to teach kids in our community how to purchase products that are slave free. Those are little tiny one-way streets, it seems. But if you get enough of those, you have a lot more communication. And it happens between the agencies, not at the higher level, but because the community engages in those and we bring the private part of this council into the picture in a more amplified way.

Dave [00:11:11] I don’t believe the council has met yet because they’re just getting established right now. When does the work actually kick off? Do you know?

Sandie [00:11:17] Well, we started onboarding the week after the announcement, and we have weekly conference calls at this point, and we will be figuring out our work schedule and how often we’ll meet. Probably the expectation because 2020 is the 20th anniversary of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act and because January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, we’ll probably do something in D.C. during January.

Dave [00:11:54] You know, so, many of our listeners know so, much more about trafficking than the average citizen, Sandie, because of your work and because of your expertise in bringing in so, many wonderful guests over the years as we’ve been together. As you think about this new opportunity to create partnerships and overlapping networks and prevention, what do you most want our audience to know that we can best be supporting you, but also, that we can, you know, potentially come alongside and continue to influence in positive ways?

Sandie [00:12:27] I think I want our community to understand that everybody has a place. You love the pathology image that we’ve talked about before, the jug on the island of Crete. I could stand up inside of it. And they carried grain and oil down, narrow steps, no elevator. So, they put handles all around it. And I see ending human trafficking as a really big, big issue with so, many complex parts. And there is a handle for every single person. And if you’re a teacher in kindergarten, how do you begin to build in to this next generation an appreciation for children’s rights, for empathy? If you’re teaching in a university, how do you plug this generation of students into social justice, in action, in their own community? Everybody has a role.

Dave [00:13:34] As you think about the future. And again, I know this is old news, so, it’s hard to say. But long term, what are the things that you would hope for that would really come out of your service as a leader on this console? But more importantly, the work of the council and the work of the intergovernmental coordination across with the council?

Sandie [00:13:55] My hope is that survivors, victims will have better resources that last longer, that understand the trauma that they’ve experienced and that increase the length of time that services are available to them that improve access to sustainable housing, that provide for ongoing trauma counseling. We didn’t do a good job of protecting many of our own citizens. If you look at the trafficking report for 2018, in most regions, the predominant victim was a domestic victim of human trafficking. So, we have to up our game and do a better job of prevention. But especially we owe our services to those who have been victimized because we just haven’t gotten a handle on this.

Dave [00:14:57] What does this mean for you now in your work at Vanguard and the Global Center for Women and Justice and the podcast and all of that as you take on these new responsibilities? Will it change what you’re doing on a daily basis, do you have a sense of that?

Sandie [00:15:12] I think it refines and hones my focus and is a motivation to amplify what we’re doing, to do even better work in our community, to use our platform for education. There’s research that shows that education is better than a screening tool for early identification of domestic victims of human trafficking right here in our own backyard. I believe that this role will offer an opportunity to figure out how to cross pollinate, if you will, with other leaders from other regions in the U.S. so, that we can learn from each other and implement best practices in our own communities. Because while I am very convinced that top down is a great way to start, we’ve talked about this in the Wilberforce model of ending trans-Atlantic slavery. But ultimately, it’s our overlapping networks that literally become a safety net for our own community.

Dave [00:16:23] And so, that’s the future of being able to zero in on there.

Sandie [00:16:26] We’re going to create as many opportunities for our students to be part of this. We keep building opportunities for our students to do study abroad, to do community engagements, to go into our schools and do education like Live2Free has been doing.

Dave [00:16:45] What should I ask you about that you’d like us to know that we haven’t already heard about on the council?

Sandie [00:16:51] I think that the opportunity for our counsel to engage with the president’s inner agency task force, 15 federal agencies, this is something that we’re going to look at from the perspective of bringing more private voice to that. And I believe that we should be, as a community, looking for opportunities to use our collective voices, as educators, as people of faith, as community leaders. We have a lot of non-profits that are also, very siloed in their sectors. And the public-private partnership model will offer a map forward to build more collaboration. And really one of the disadvantages of working in a Western context, and, you know, I’ve lived all over the world. Is here in America, we say “I” all the time. And I is the first letter in Isolate. And if we try to do something alone, we get tired and we set it down. This public-private partnership calls us to WE, and we will do this together, we will take turns carrying the heavy part, but we will end human trafficking.

Dave [00:18:27] I feel this tremendous privilege, Sandie, of now having served on the board for, I think almost 10 years of getting to watch your work up close, maybe a bit more than the average folks that come across.

Sandie [00:18:41] He’s seen me cry, you guys.

Dave [00:18:43] I have seen your cry a few times and we’ve all cried with you a few times. And so, much of what you do is about how to make this issue better, how to help people, how to serve. And you are so, selfless in a good way in the work that you do. And so, all that said, let me also, say here, you know, I’m so, proud of you for, you know, that the recognition is wonderful. But what you said at the beginning of just how consistent you are, you are so, consistent in giving. You are on the road all the time, going around the world, helping people, supporting people, speaking at events, and volunteering your time so, many times you do things without receiving any kind of compensation. And it is just really amazing to have had this opportunity to work with you. And I’m so, privileged to get to continue to support your work as you step into a new phase of this journey and get to have a bit more influence in the work you do now at government level. And I’m so, proud of you. I’m so, grateful that we get to do this work together and just your commitment to this show and to ending trafficking. And I just thank you for bringing me along this journey to and helping me to support you. I’m super grateful for it.

Sandie [00:20:00] I’m grateful and I’m grateful that we created this podcast together and it’s grown. And I believe it will be a very important tool in my contribution to this advisory council. And I do want to invite our listeners if you have questions. If you have suggestions that are relative to public-private partnership, please feel free to email us. Click on endinghumantrafficking.org and send that and it’ll come to us.

Dave [00:20:35] Yeah, there’s so, much ahead for us, Sandie. Not only with the console, of course, but us continuing to work together to bring this community along and to continue to discover more and to continue to build partnerships and work through the overlapping networks we’ve established so, beautifully over the years.

Sandie [00:20:55] Oh, and don’t forget, everybody, you need to put Ensure Justice 2020 on your calendar right now. It is going to be a birthday party for the 20th anniversary of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. You will eat cake, March 6th and 7th.

Dave [00:21:14] Good. So, heading over there and this is a wonderful year to attend, if you haven’t attended before, because of this wonderful work Sandie is now doing at the highest levels of government, and also, because of the anniversary, go over to EnsureJustice.com in order to find out more details. We will be here for the conference March 6th and 7th, 2020, as Sandie mentioned, it’s in Southern California here. So, you’ll learn a ton and build the kinds of networks that are just so, important for all of us and the work that we’re doing. And I’d invite you if this is especially one of your first times listening to the show, I’d invite you to take the first step and to hop online and download a copy of Sandie’s book, The Five Things You Must Know, A Quick Start Guide to Ending Human Trafficking. Read that guide, it’s going to teach you the five critical things that Sandie has identified that you should know before you join the fight against human trafficking. You can get access by going over endinghumantrafficking.org. That’s also, the best place to seek out all of our past show notes, episodes, to search for it easily. And as Sandie mentioned, you can reach out to us directly either through the Web site or by sending us an email to feedback@endinghumantrafficking.org and we will consider your request and see if we can be helpful here on the show. And we will be back in two weeks to continue our path forward, right, Sandie?

Sandie [00:22:43] Absolutely. Thank you, Dave.

Dave [00:22:45] See you all in two weeks.

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