Last year, we told you about some of the many women we admire who are working to end human trafficking and injustice. This year, in honor of Father’s Day, we’re profiling a few men who are doing admirable and important work as anti-trafficking activists.
While he is best known for his filmography, Ashton Kutcher is increasingly well-known for his passionate fight against child sex trafficking. He and his ex-wife Demi Moore founded Thorn, a non-profit dedicated to ending child sex trafficking through partnerships with tech companies, law enforcement, and NGOs. Last year, Kutcher delivered a powerful speech to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee about his organization’s work. Watch it here.
Erik Bauer is one of the most well-known attorneys engaged in the fight against human trafficking. His work on behalf of mothers whose children had been trafficked on Backpage was chronicled in the documentary I Am Jane Doe. His work to change legal precedents on behalf of victims has been a critical part of the anti-trafficking movement in the courts.
The famous pop star has experienced the horrors of human trafficking more closely than most. He personally rescued three girls that were being sold for prostitution in India and went on to found the Ricky Martin Foundation to combat human trafficking. As a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Martin’s organization focuses on education as a means to the end of modern slavery, with a geographic focus on Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.
Derek Ellerman, Polaris Project Founder and Bradley Myles, CEO
Ellerman founded the Polaris Project, one of the leading anti-trafficking organizations in the country and the stewards of the National Trafficking Hotline, with Katherine Chon while still enrolled in college. He was inspired by reading about fake massage parlors who enslaved their workers. Today, the organization is headed by Myles, who helped oversee the launch of the hotline. While Polaris’ reach extends beyond the hotline, it’s been a model for anti-trafficking hotlines around the world and has responded to over 25,000 cases since its inception.