The American Bus Association (ABA) is partnering with Truckers Against Trafficking’s program Busing on the Lookout to combat human trafficking.
“Human trafficking is a disgrace on American roadways that needs to be eradicated,” said ABA President/CEO Peter Pantuso. “Many of our members already participate in human trafficking awareness training for their employees. We look forward to participating in the collective effort with Busing on the Lookout. We have a very diverse industry and ABA wants to be the key connector to the industry with this great program.”
Busing on the Lookout’s mission is to educate and equip all members of the busing industry with the information necessary to enable them to fight human trafficking as part of their everyday jobs. Around the world it is estimated that more than 40 million people are enslaved today. Human trafficking has been reported in all 50 states and the number of victims in the U.S. is estimated in the hundreds of thousands.
Bus drivers are already making a difference in fighting this crime. A number of them have already recognized things that didn’t seem right with passengers they’ve been transporting. Their calls to law enforcement have resulted in successful victim recovery.
“Recognizing that through their sheer numbers, extensive travels, and the nature of their jobs, members of the bus industry could provide an extra set of eyes and ears for law enforcement in recovering victims and arresting traffickers, we are seeking to get everyone in the bus industry – drivers, terminal workers, maintenance staff, ticket counter personnel, dispatch operators, etc. – trained on what to look for and how to report it effectively,” explained Annie Sovcik, program director for Busing on the Lookout (BOTL).
“We are grateful to the ABA for its commitment to combatting this heinous crime. And we are optimistic that through this partnership, we are taking a significant step forward in creating another mobile army on our roadways that can help disrupt trafficking networks.”