Key Non-Profits Convene Alliance to Combat Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children
NFL Head Coach Frank Reich, Linda Reich Join Alliance to Help Generate Awareness of Human Trafficking Crisis
Ahead of the 2021 NFL season, five nonprofit organizations have convened an alliance to combat the sexual abuse and exploitation of children – a global crisis widely believed to worsen leading up to and during major sporting and entertainment events. The alliance aims to educate the public on the perennial nature and warning signs of human trafficking, empower them to report suspicious activity, and provide resources to victims and those most vulnerable to exploitation.
The coalition, the Alliance Against Human Trafficking & Exploitation, comprises anti-abuse nonprofits kNot Today, The US Institute Against Human Trafficking (USIAHT), It’s a Penalty, A21, and Inner City Visions. Early supporters include the NFL and the Los Angeles Super Bowl Host Committee.
“As professional athletes and coaches we have an opportunity to leave a lasting impact in our communities that extends beyond the field,” said Frank Reich, Head Coach of the Indianapolis Colts and founder of the kNot Today foundation. “To me, nothing is more horrific than the abuse and exploitation of children for the gain of those who should be protecting them. This Alliance brings together the influence, experience and resources that can drive massive change. And with the support of the NFL, we have a platform to reach every corner of the nation and save lives.”
Though human trafficking and other forms of exploitation are believed to intensify surrounding major events, experts note that the crisis exists year-round in communities nationwide.
More than 100,000 children are sold into sexual slavery in the U.S. each year, according to ECPAT-USA. Despite the global nature of the challenge, an estimated 83 percent of these victims are U.S. citizens, U.S. Department of Justice figures show.
“If a campaign like this existed to help educate others when I was being trafficked as a teen, it may have prevented me from being trafficked in the first place,” said Kat Rosenblatt, a human-trafficking survivor and activist.
The launch of the alliance was announced Sunday afternoon at Lucas Oil Stadium during a Week 1 NFL preseason matchup between the Indianapolis Colts and Carolina Panthers. Colts Head Coach Frank Reich and his wife, Linda Reich, founded kNot Today, an organization that creates awareness and supports prevention and restoration initiatives.
During halftime, fans in attendance were shown a public service announcement featuring Head Coach of the Carolina Panthers, Matt Rhule alongside Frank Reich, Colts Quarterback Carson Wentz and All-Pro Defensive Tackle DeForest Buckner. kNot Today has also garnered public support on this issue from Colts legend Peyton Manning, former Head Coach Tony Dungy, defensive end Justin Houston and others.
PSA VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8QhjtAxxdg.
Given the breadth of the challenge, the Alliance intends to continue through the NFL season and beyond with the goal of empowering more people to take action and make a report if they see signs of human trafficking.
Anyone who suspects they’ve encountered human trafficking or exploitation are encouraged to text “help” to 233733 or call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 to make a report.
To get involved with this effort, you can reach out to kNot Today at firstname.lastname@example.org.