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Sex Trafficking: How Brands Can Help End Commercial Exploitation by Interrupting Demand

by Lauren Hare

As a first-time attendee at a Sustainable Brands conference, I expected SB’16 San Diegoto be largely about environmental issues. It certainly was – from the conference’s commitment to producing zero waste, to Pratt & Whitney’s “green” jet engine on display in the parking lot. But as a purpose-driven professional with a commitment to the social impact side of corporate social responsibility, I was thrilled to hear panelists redefine sustainability through a human-focused lens.

In particular, Wednesday’s panel on sex trafficking and how brands can help interrupt demand was a standout session. Moderated by Gwen Migita, VP of Sustainability & Corporate Citizenship at Caesars Corporation, the panel featured a corporate brand leading the charge to end commercial exploitation along with subject matter experts. Brenda Schultz, Director of Responsible Business at Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, shared how her company has taken strides to fight sex trafficking; while Mar Brettmann, Executive Director of Businesses Ending Slavery and Trafficking (BEST), and Dr. Halleh Seddighzadeh, an international counter-trafficking advisor and trauma specialist in torture and sex trafficking, provided context on the far-ranging scope of the issue...

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