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Survivor Leadership Series: Racism & the Anti-Trafficking Movement
June 15 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
This webinar discusses racism in the anti-trafficking movement based on a survey of trafficking survivors. Distributed in multiple languages, the survey sought to learn more about the impact of systemic and structural racism experienced by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) trafficking survivors. Their answers provided insight into their lived experience navigating support services, legal issues, health care, and the anti-trafficking community.
ABOUT YOUR PRESENTERS
Evelyn Chumbow is a survivor of child labor trafficking turned anti-trafficking activist and public speaker who has focused her life’s work on ending modern-day slavery, a crime impacting some 40 million victims globally. Ms. Chumbow was brought to the United States from Cameroon at the age of nine and forced to cook, clean, and care for her trafficker’s children. She was never paid for her work, and any hope that she might escape her miserable life was undermined by the constant beatings she received from her trafficker.
After years of captivity, she finally escaped and her trafficker was sentenced to 17 years in prison. Today, Ms. Chumbow works tirelessly to raise awareness and help other survivors. She serves as an advisor to human trafficking NGOs, and has been invited to brief government agencies about human trafficking from a survivor’s perspective. She is invited regularly to speak around the world about her experience, including at the White House. She also serves as an advocate and mentor for fellow survivors.
In December 2015, fulfilling a life-long dream, Ms. Chumbow graduated with a BS in Homeland Security Studies from the University of Maryland University College. She was appointed by President Obama to serve as United States Advisory Council on Human Trafficking to his administration. Since January 2015, she has worked at the law firm of Baker & McKenzie LLP in Washington, DC, where she has the opportunity to support human trafficking and human rights-related pro bono initiatives.
Roxie Farrow is the Operations Manager for the Human Trafficking Legal Center. Farrow graduated with a Masters in Industrial Organizational Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in 2015.
Farrow is the co-chair of The Maryland Survivor Network, a membership group providing support, professional, and leadership development for human trafficking survivors participating in anti-trafficking efforts in the state.
Farrow is also a Survivor Leader Consultant for the University of Maryland Support, Advocacy, Freedom, and Empowerment (SAFE) Center for Human Trafficking Survivors’, serving on the Human Trafficking Clinicians Collaborative and the Human Trafficking Survivors’ Council.
Prior to joining the Human Trafficking Legal Center, Farrow worked as Senior Admissions Coordinator & Manager for Psychiatric Institute of Washington, a behavioral health treatment facility in Washington D.C. Before embarking on her graduate studies, Farrow founded The Exodus Project, a human trafficking advocacy and awareness organization that focuses on educating community leaders and youth in the D.C. metro area. Farrow received her Bachelor of Science from Trinity Washington University in Psychology with a Minor in Arabic Literature.
Fainess Lipenga has been an active member of the National Survivor Network since 2013. As a survivor of labor trafficking, she uses her voice and experience to educate the community and raise awareness. Her mission is to prevent other survivors from being re-victimized and to give them hope and courage to heal, become leaders, and achieve their dreams. Prior to her role as Training Advisor, Ms. Lipenga served as a consultant to the Human Trafficking Legal Center for more than five years.
Ms. Lipenga has testified before the U.S. Congress regarding the challenges survivors face. She has presented to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. She has provided training for pro bono lawyers, law students, physicians, law enforcement officials, and federal prosecutors. She has spoken at national conferences and developed expert training materials. Ms. Lipenga serves as a survivor-consultant to the Human Trafficking Legal Center in Washington, DC. In 2019, Ms. Lipenga testified before the Maryland General Assembly to advocate for the passage of the Anti-Exploitation Act. With the help of her testimony, Maryland passed the bill, making labor trafficking an illegal act for the first time in Maryland.
Ms. Lipenga is the recipient of the Justice for Victims of Crime Award from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of Washington, D.C. She believes survivor voices and leadership are essential to advocacy on human trafficking. She is a certified nursing assistant and continues to pursue her goal of becoming a registered nurse.
Deborah Pembrook (she/her) chairs the Coalition to End Human Trafficking in Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties. She is also Human Trafficking Outreach Manager at Monterey County Rape Crisis Center, one of the Coalition partners.
Deborah left a successful executive position in a technology company to help her community end the types of exploitation she experienced in her childhood. An inspiring educator, she has partnered with and trained regional police and sheriff departments, probation officers, educators and direct service providers to humanize exploited children and vulnerable people.
With more than eight years in the anti-trafficking field, her experience ranges from providing direct services to trafficking survivors and other survivors of violence, helping create a cross-sector community collaboration, and building community awareness, outreach campaigns and multi-sector response. Deborah has served two terms on the California CSEC Action Team Advisory Board. She is the 2016 recipient of the YWCA Silicon Valley Empowerment Award.