The June 2019 arrest of billionaire Jeffrey Epstein has brought the issue of human trafficking into the news again. It is a good time to talk about how to refer to the victims and survivors of this evil.
Recognizing the need for culturally and linguistically appropriate social and human services for the more economically disadvantaged sectors of the Thai community to become self-sufficient and culturally proficient, Thai CDC initially began providing legal and emergency relief services, crisis counseling and intervention, advocacy, cultural orientation and language assistance when it was first founded in 1994. These programs and services targeting low-income Thai immigrants included our Self-Sufficiency Services, Family Services, Housing and Community Economic Development and Youth Services. Our Self-Sufficiency Services helped Thai immigrants overcome the language and cultural barriers preventing them from successfully integrating into mainstream society and becoming independent and self-reliant. These services included case management, crisis counseling and intervention, cultural orientation, information and referrals, language assistance and instruction, legal consultation, survival skills development, and housing and job search and placement assistance. Our Family Services included an Immigrant Family Adjustment Program, Immigrant Families Matter, Immigrant Schooling Counts, Family-Based Advocacy and a Parent Education Program.
Thai CDC started the Slavery Eradication and Rights Initiative, SERI, which means freedom in Thai, to raise awareness about human trafficking and modern-day slavery in the United States.