Coalition will offer Trafficking 101

Presentation Academy students took part in a prayer service May 1 focused on ending human trafficking, which is the buying and selling of people for sex, labor and other services. Sex trafficking spikes around major events, such as the Kentucky Derby, and advocates try to raise awareness of the problem when events are scheduled. The PATH Coalition of Kentucky is offering programs to help people learn the signs of trafficking and avoid exploitation. (Record File Photo by Marnie McAllister)

By Marnie McAllister, Record Editor

In order to educate the public about human trafficking — particularly how to recognize it and avoid it — the PATH Coalition of Kentucky is offering two programs.

Organizers are offering the classes for free to churches and organizations interested in hosting them.

“The first is human trafficking 101 — what do we look for, what do we do?” explained Sister Joetta Venneman, a Sister of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. “It’s geared toward someone who may have heard about it and wants to learn more.”

The class will include information about trafficking at the national, state and local levels, said Sister Venneman, who serves in the Office of Social and Environmental Justice for the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth.

The other program is specifically for parents and their teenagers. It addresses safety on social media to help teens avoid exploitation and trafficking.

“We want to help parents and teens understand there is a risk when they use social media,” Sister Venneman said.

The program includes a digital contract, which offers parents and teens an opportunity to discuss social media, set boundaries and address privacy expectations.

“What will be shared with mom and dad and what won’t?” Sister Venneman said, as an example. “Who will I go to if something happens?

“Its bringing the point that someone could be exploited to the forefront,” she said.

For more information about the programs and the PATH Coalition, visit

To learn more or schedule a program, call 512-3711 or email

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