Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $750,000)
In 2020, Homeland Security Investigations and Idaho Community Outreach Behavioral Services launched Idaho’s first anti-human trafficking task force. The Treasure Valley Human Trafficking Task Force (TVHTTF) has grown, but remains in infancy, lacking resources, funding, and the foundation to sustain an effective multidisciplinary task force. With a focus on sex trafficking, the TVHTTF has lacked a proper response to labor trafficking. Federal funding has expanded Idaho’s response through direct victim services, but Idaho needs an effective task force to combat human trafficking. This project will address these issues by creating a formal task force in the Treasure Valley to include the establishment of formal leadership structure, written protocols, expansion of partnerships, data collection and tracking, and coordinated resources and responses through a victim-centered, trauma-informed, and survivor-informed approach.
Together, Idaho State Police (ISP) and the Nampa Family Justice Center (NFJC), an accredited family justice center that promotes safety, self-sufficiency, hope, and healing to those affected by abuse, will head this initiative. The TVHTTF will focus on the counties of Ada, Canyon, Gem, Payette, Boise, Elmore, Valley, Adams, Washington, Owyhee, however, will provide regional trainings on a state-wide level. The NFJC currently holds federal funding for direct victim services that includes partnerships with other local nongovernmental organizations. Since holding this grant, the NFJC has been able to significantly increase its reach in providing direct victim services to trafficking victims. Prior to the start of direct services implementation, the NFJC served eleven victims of human trafficking in 2020 and 2021. Since October 2022, the NFJC has provided services to 46 victims of human trafficking. ISP has conducted four human trafficking investigations and Nampa Police Department had 53 investigations of human trafficking over the last three years. Most local law enforcement do not track human trafficking and categorizes these cases as other crimes. There have been zero prosecutions of human trafficking on the state level.