Greater Chattanooga Hospitality Association Receives First Tennessee Human Trafficking Awareness Certification

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Greater Chattanooga Hospitality Association board of directors has become Tennessee’s first such organization to complete certification training for Human Trafficking awareness.

The GCHA has committed itself to become a signee of the Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct, a certification given by End Child Prostitution and Trafficking, an international organization that fights human trafficking. 

Hamilton County has reported more than 100 cases of adult sex trafficking and up to 50 cases of trafficking in minors.  The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and Vanderbilt University conducted a statewide study that found there were more than 100 cases of human sex trafficking documented by social service agencies in Chattanooga. At the time, no local law enforcement agency had any reports of sex trafficking. 

Tennessee is ranked #1 in the USA in its efforts to fight sex trafficking in particular by “Shared Hope” an International organization who is leading in prevention strategies, restoration programs and justice initiatives to combat trafficking in the U.S. and abroad.  

Ann Coulter, a volunteer with the Women’s Fund of Chattanooga said, “The Shared Hope International study found that 78 of the state’s 95 counties had reported at least one instance of human trafficking. Here in the Chattanooga area sex trafficking is the dominate form of this awful crime.  Human trafficking, including the trafficking of underage girls for sex is modern day slavery according to the Department of Homeland Security and it is growing, not just around the world but in our own communities."

The GCHA’s mission is:   To promote and enhance the lodging, restaurant, tourism, and allied industries through education, government relations, environment excellence and community service. Members of the association (hotel properties and related companies) have been urged to share the certification training with their employees to raise awareness of this serious crime. One hotel, the Doubletree Hotel has already received its certification, according to Bill Mish, the hotel general manager.

In Tennessee, human trafficking is defined as: recruitment, smuggling, transporting, harboring, buying or selling of a person through force, threats, fraud, deception, or coercion for the purposes of exploitation, prostitution, pornography, migrant work, sweat shops, domestic servitude, forced labor, bondage, peonage, or involuntary servitude. 

For more information or to report suspected human trafficking call Tennessee Human Trafficking Resources Center Hotline 855.558-6484.  www.stopsextraffickinginTN.com


New Hamilton County Businesses

Here are the new business licenses from the County Clerk's office: 309 MEDIA 100 CHEROKEE BLVD SUITE 2112 CHATTANOOGA, TN 37405 A TOTAL EDGE 8916 BRAMLETT ROAD HARRISON, TN 37341 A-1 TAXI AND TRANSPORTATION LLC 8908 DRAKE PARKWAY ROAD CHATTANOOGA, TN 37416 ADVANCED COMMERCIAL GROUP, INC VARIOUS LOCATIONS CHATTANOOGA, TN 37400 ADVENTUREITUS ... (click for more)

TVA Clears Next Hurdle For Small Modular Reactors

The potential for Small Modular Reactors in the TVA’s operating fleet reached another milestone this month. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has accepted and docketed the utility’s early site permit application for the potential construction and operation of multiple SMR units at the Clinch River Site in Oak Ridge. This action means that the NRC staff may now begin its technical ... (click for more)

Walker Charged With Sunday Night Murder Of Girlfriend In LaFayette

A 29-year-old Walker County man has been charged with murdering his girlfriend, also 29. Sheriff Steve Wilson said David Ryan Walker was charged in the slaying of Candace Ann Hankins. He said she was killed inside a house on Wheeler Road in LaFayette and her body was found in woods behind the house. The sheriff said Walker called relatives to express remorse about the killing. ... (click for more)

Man With Gun Runs From Police At Hamilton Place Mall; Pushes Shoppers Out Of The Way

A man who was found to be armed with a handgun was chased by police early Saturday afternoon. He pushed shoppers out of the way during the pursuit, which included racing down an escalator.   Erwin J. Rogers, 22, of 6111 Nottingham Dr., is facing multiple charges.    Around 1:50 p.m., Chattanooga Police officers working at the Hamilton Place Mall ... (click for more)

Beyond Freedom Of Speech

Yes, most people know about the First Amendment to our Constitution, "The right, guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, to express beliefs and ideas without unwarranted government restriction."  I being a "deplorable" draw the line when people block traffic, try to disrupt, and even stop an activity through malice and disregard for others. Case being ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: What Else $3 Can Mean

Orchard Knob Middle School, located on North Highland Park Avenue in Chattanooga, led every other secondary school in the state of Tennessee last year with 6.8 percent of its students expelled. So as people are working feverishly to keep the school from being taken over by the state’s Department of Education, allow me to pose a question. Last Friday during the last period of ... (click for more)