Trocaire will hold a panel discussion on human trafficking titled “The Trauma of Human Trafficking: A Healthcare Response” on Thursday, April 25. Organized by the college’s Office of Mission, Ministry and Service, the event is scheduled for 2:30-4 p.m. and is open to the public.
A Catholic institution founded by the Sisters of Mercy, Trocaire draws inspiration from Catholic social teaching with its emphasis on human dignity and the common good. This event also speaks to the Sisters’ five Critical Concerns, two of which are supporting women and advocating for non-violence.
Human trafficking, a form of modern slavery, affects mostly women, but also children and men from all walks of life, race, ethnicity and socio-economic strata.
“Traffickers prey upon the vulnerable. They deceive, coerce, and abuse their victims,” explained Bob Shearn, Trocaire’s director of Mission, Ministry and Service. “Consequently, victims are often deeply traumatized and typically bear deep psychological and emotional scars from the trampling of human dignity, in addition to any physical wounds.”
Panelists at the event will include:
Julie Palmer, executive director of PATH, Inc. (People Against Trafficking Humans), a faith-based not-for-profit organization working to end human trafficking in Western New York and beyond through education, prevention and restoration.
Kelly Galloway, executive director of Mona’s House, a Christian organization in Buffalo that works to help those exploited through human trafficking through housing, a 12-month healing program, life skills and coaching sessions, and awareness efforts.
Cheryl Catuzza, MSN, RN, Nursing faculty at Trocaire College
Mary Jo Gugino-Colligan, Mercy associate and president of Angels of Mercy, a Christ-centered non-profit in Rochester dedicated to helping women and girls achieve freedom, dignity and restoration locally, across the nation and around the world.
“Today’s panel of experts have a wealth of expertise dealing with victims of human trafficking, both from a healthcare and human services perspective,” Shearn said. “They will help us to explore the world of trauma as it pertains to victims of human trafficking, and offer approaches to identifying, treating, and hopefully, restoring the lives and dignity of those so victimized.”
“The Trauma of Human Trafficking: A Healthcare Response” will take place at the Mercy Center auditorium, located at 625 Abbot Road in Buffalo (across the street from Trocaire’s main campus). Attendees are welcome to park on the streets around the Mercy Center, and there will also be shuttle service from the parking lot of the Salem Lutheran Church on the corner of Whitfield and McKinley Parkway.