Company Spotlight: Sabre Taking a Stand to End Human Trafficking
We spoke with Tyra Jordan, Global Corporate Responsibility Manager at Sabre Corporation, about Sabre’s Passport to Freedom program and their commitment to ending human trafficking worldwide. Sabre is a leading technology company in the travel and tourism industry and aims to use their influence to lead the industry in the movement to tackle human trafficking issues. Read what Tyra had to say about the campaign:
1. Describe Sabre’s Passport to Freedom program
Human trafficking is a $32 billion trade, making it one of the most lucrative, widespread and fastest-growing global crimes. The travel and tourism industry is often leveraged as millions are trafficked within and across domestic and international borders and kept in hotels.
Sabre launched the Passport to Freedom program in 2012 to promote the awareness of trafficking within the travel industry and beyond through education, advocacy, and collaboration. Working with corporate, government, and non-profit partners, our collective efforts are focused on training others to recognize victims, helping victims in their recovery, and bringing their traffickers to justice.
Sabre became the first global travel technology company to sign the End Child Prostitution and Trafficking (ECPAT) International Code of Conduct, an international tourism-focused initiative against human trafficking.
2. We know that your corporate and non-profit partnerships have provided scholarships and support for trafficked victims and increased awareness through targeted training opportunities for the travel and tourism industry. How did Sabre initially get connected in that specific impact area?
At the launch of the program, Sabre committed to creating a scholarship program to help human trafficking victims reclaim their lives by making education and training more accessible. In partnership with BCD Travel, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group, Hilton Worldwide, Wyndham Hotel Group, Covenant House and Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the scholarship fund for human trafficking survivors launched in January 2015. In its first year, five scholarships were awarded to trafficking survivors to help them receive the education they need to gain long-term sustainable employment. Sabre is continuing to make organizations that work with trafficking survivors aware that this scholarship is available so they can encourage and assist their clients to apply each year.
3. How have you kept new and existing employees engaged in the Passport to Freedom program?
Sabre has committed to educating all our employees on human trafficking and helping them become Freedom Ambassadors through an online training course. The course was designed to increase awareness of human trafficking and how it operates, help identify warning signs, and know how to report a potential situation. The training has since been adopted by many of our customers and partners as part of their own anti-trafficking efforts and is hosted publicly on Sabre’s Passport to Freedom website.
Our employees have also stayed engaged through anti-trafficking campaigns and volunteer projects in their regions such as “Shine a Light on Slavery” Day in India and the “Don’t Look Away” program in Krakow. In addition, the Sabre legal team helps trafficked victims through pro bono legal clinics at partner agencies where they help victims identify assistance for which they may qualify.
4. What are your goals for the Passport to Freedom program?
The Passport to Freedom program has three program actions to combat human trafficking:
Educate - We must use our influence within the industry and with our own employees to raise awareness and provide a plan of action.
Advocate - By utilizing our relationships in both public and private sectors we can advocate for victim support and legislative changes.
Collaborate - We will collaborate with our partners, customers, suppliers and all our contacts in our span influence to to combat modern slavery together.
5. Do you believe that this program has been effective in achieving your goals? Why or why not?
While there are many organizations and companies like ours bringing awareness to this issue, the real work has just started. Continued education, collaboration, and advocacy are crucial to combat this crime. However, increased awareness of this issue in the travel and technology industries and beyond is driving positive change through innovative partnerships that can create solutions, expand services for survivors and target prevention efforts.
6. How did Sabre get involved in the launch of the United Way Worldwide Center on Human Trafficking and Slavery?
Last year, Sabre teamed up with United Way Worldwide (UWW) to help build a coalition of anti-trafficking stakeholders. The goal was to elevate and scale a collective response to the issue of trafficking. The Center on Human Trafficking and Slavery was launched in June with Sabre as a founding partner and sponsor. The Center, a virtual collective impact model, is designed to create forums for cross-sector collaboration and drive comprehensive policy solutions to address human trafficking. We believe that through the cooperative efforts of this coalition, we can achieve social change that goes beyond what one sector can achieve alone.
7. Do you have any specific goals for your #igivehope social media campaign?
The #igivehope social campaign is part of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime’s Blue Heart Campaign. It is an awareness-raising initiative to encourage involvement and inspire action to combat human trafficking. As a UN partner, Sabre participates in this campaign to show solidarity with the victims of human trafficking and to demonstrate our commitment to the issue.
We are proud to partner with Sabre and to support their efforts in this important cause! To learn more about the Passport to Freedom program and the #igivehope campaign, visit the Passport to Freedom website.