Church of Scientology Backs Super Bowl Anti-Trafficking Stance

Human Rights Summit planned to counter human trafficking at the Super Bowl, which has been described as “the single largest human trafficking incident in the United States”

As today’s summit against human trafficking convenes at the War Memorial in Trenton, the Church of Scientology National Affairs Office in Washington, D.C., pledges support for New Jersey’s strategy to prevent human trafficking at the 2014 Super Bowl.

According to the Rutherford Institute, during the 2009 Super Bowl in Tampa, the Florida Commission Against Human Trafficking estimated that “tens of thousands of women and minors” were sexually trafficked in the Miami area. Some women as young as 14 were advertised as “Super Bowl Specials.”

The abuse was so rampant, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott referred to Super Bowl XLV in Arlington, Texas, in 2010 as “the single largest human trafficking incident in the United States.”

“The Super Bowl is an American institution and its abuse is not just New Jersey’s problem—it affects us all,” says Bari Berger, Public Affairs Director of the Scientology National Affairs Office.

Acting New Jersey Attorney General John J. Hoffman planned today’s summit to “address the needs and concerns of human trafficking victims and survivors and highlight the effective ways to resolve those issues.”

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed the bipartisan “Human Trafficking Prevention, Protection, and Treatment Act” May 6 to strengthen state law by increasing penalties for and providing resources to prevent human trafficking in New Jersey along with bills designating January as Human Trafficking Prevention Month and January 11 as Human Trafficking Awareness Day.

“We believe D.C. needs to fully support New Jersey’s initiative on this crucial issue,” says Berger. “We are addressing this in our own yearly human trafficking summit December 10, Human Rights Day, and extend an open invitation to NGOs, local and national leaders, and concerned officials along the Eastern Seaboard to engage in coordinated effort in support of a safe and humane Super Bowl 2014.”

Since the late 1990s the Church of Scientology has been a proponent of human rights education as a vital element in fighting human trafficking. The National Affairs Office has met with members of Congress and their aides in support of effective action to eliminate human trafficking. The office partners with members of the Congressional black Caucus, the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, and Fair Girls, and holds forums and conferences that bring together human rights and human trafficking groups, community groups and religious organizations to carry out coordinated action to counter this scourge.