Corp Comm Connects

Region of Peel approves permanent program to tackle human sex-trafficking
June 30, 2022

After starting a pilot in 2018, the Region of Peel is permanently funding an anti-human-trafficking program in the community.

This $2.1-million program aims to prevent human trafficking, to assist those currently being trafficked, and to provide them with safe housing.

The program has an emergency housing component, a transitional home, access to counselling, job skills and more.

“Human sex trafficking is a crime that impacts our entire community and requires a long-term community response,” said Sonia Pace, director of community partnerships with the Region of Peel. “The strategy becoming permanent is a big win for the community partnerships team; this will enable us to continue our efforts in providing trauma-informed, survivor-centred services to support victims/survivors in rebuilding their lives.”

The transitional house is supported by the Elizabeth Fry Society, and an integrated services hub is supported by Our Place Peel, and Catholic Family Services of Dufferin-Peel.

The hub provides health care, counselling and employment services for victims.

“I am proud the strategy is now permanent and for our partners continuous support to help survivors in re-establishing their lives and preventing those at-risk from being preyed upon by the traffickers,” said Sean Baird, Peel’s commissioner of human services.

The majority of human trafficking cases across Canada are in Ontario, with 62 per cent originating in the GTA.

Victims are typically 12 to 24 years old and are primarily women and girls.

If you are a victim of human sex-trafficking, or know someone who is, call the Canadian Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-833-900-1010.