In Our Backyard
Human Trafficking in America and What We Can Do to Stop It
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Modern slavery is happening all around you--and you can be part of the solution
Human trafficking is not just something that happens in other countries. Neither is it something that just happens to "other people" such as runaways or the disenfranchised. Even kids in your own neighborhood can fall victim. But they don't have to.
Through true stories and expertise from her many years of boots-on-the-ground experience, anti-trafficking expert Nita Belles teaches you everything you need to know about human trafficking in the United States, helping you identify risk factors, take practical steps to keep your loved ones and neighbors safe from predators, and recognize trafficking around you in order to help fight it.
"The aptly titled In Our Backyard is superb. Belles compellingly calls for action based on the truth that every human life is of equal, enormous value."--Mark Lagon, former US ambassador and director of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP)
"A vital resource and tool that should be required reading for every concerned citizen."--Francine Rivers, author of Redeeming Love
"Information is power. In this well-written, arresting book, we have the information we need to defend those we love most."--Frank Schaeffer, author of Why I Am an Atheist Who Believes in God
"Nita Belles's book detailing the shocking reality of forced labor and sex trafficking in the United States is a must read."--Lynne Hybels, author, cofounder of Willow Creek Community Church
"Every one of us can make a difference to end one of the greatest evils of our times, and in In Our Backyard, Nita Belles shows us how to do just that."--Anna Bastian, Bastian Center for the Study of Human Trafficking
"Not to be missed, this book can and will change lives only when individuals open their eyes (and hearts) to the trafficking going on around them in their own communities (and then do something about it)."--CBA Retailers + Resources
For those who have joined the modern-day abolitionist movement, Nita Belles's In Our Backyard is a vital resource and tool. I am thankful Baker has made it available to a wide audience. I highly recommend it. The information on potential indicators of human trafficking should be required reading for every concerned citizen."
Francine Rivers, author of Redeeming Love
"I'm the father of three and grandfather of five, so Nita Belles's book strikes home. What she offers is knowledge of an unspeakable evil--human trafficking. Information is power. Thus we who love our children owe Nita a huge debt of gratitude. In this well-written, arresting book, we have the information we need to defend those we love most. What greater gift could a writer give parents, grandparents, and any decent person?"
Frank Schaeffer, author of Why I Am an Atheist Who Believes in God
"In Our Backyard is an excellent introduction to learning about human trafficking, but it is more than that. It is a call to action. So many times, after learning that slavery still exists, people become overwhelmed and don't know what to do, where to start, how to help. What I love about this book are the discussion questions and the lists of practical, simple actions that are provided in each chapter. Each one of us can combat human trafficking, and it is imperative that each one of us does just that or it won't end. I was a high school history teacher for years and would tell my students about the 'tea drinkers' of history--those who lamented a social ill but did nothing more than talk about it over their tea time. The 'tea drinkers' never changed anything. We need fewer 'tea drinkers' and more activists. This book will help you kick over the tea table and get started in the fight against modern-day slavery!"
Kylla Lanier, cofounder and deputy director of Truckers against Trafficking
"Too often the problem of human trafficking is talked about in terms of abstract numbers or statistics. In her carefully researched book, In Our Backyard, Nita Belles seeks to change that. By telling the harrowing story of numerous trafficking victims, Belles puts a human face on human trafficking. Trafficking victims are, as Belles makes clear, everyday people. They live among us in suburban communities, rural towns, and urban areas and in both rich neighborhoods and poor ones. Victims are US born and those born outside our borders. Some are educated; others, without schooling. They're women and girls mostly, but also boys. In short, they can be anyone. By telling the haunting stories of victims from all different walks of life, Belles shows us how traffickers recruit and dehumanize them as well as the emotional and physical toll that trafficking can take. The problem is a daunting one. But Belles's book isn't to be read passively. It's a call to action. Every one of us can make a difference to end one of the greatest evils of our times, and in In Our Backyard, Nita Belles shows us how to do just that."
Anna Bastian, Bastian Center for the Study of Human Trafficking
"The aptly titled In Our Backyard is superb, driving home that human trafficking occurs across town, not just across oceans. Belles compellingly calls for action based on the truth that every human life is of equal, enormous value--all created in the Creator's image. Belles shows how trafficking victims aren't 'illegal aliens'--they are ensnared migrants and, often, pimped US citizens. In Our Backyard does as much as any book to shed light on how economic forces--greed and demand, and even advertising--propel trafficking. Belles carefully documents how sex trafficking is inextricably linked to prostitution and pornography as the flypaper preventing victim's flight."
Mark Lagon, former US ambassador and director of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and former executive director and CEO of Polaris Project
"Nita Belles's book detailing the shocking reality of forced labor and sex trafficking in the United States is a must-read."
Lynne Hybels, author, cofounder of Willow Creek Community Church
"I have had the opportunity to see firsthand the passion Ms. Belles has for victims of human trafficking all across our country. I am very pleased to have had the honor to work alongside Nita. It is somewhat overwhelming to work in the presence of someone who has truly made a difference in so many people's lives."
Heather Wagner, special assistant attorney general for attorney general Jim Hood of Mississippi
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