SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH (January 28, 2021) – Salt Lake Chamber President and CEO Derek Miller was appointed to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Task Force to Eradicate Human Trafficking. The appointment underscores Miller’s commitment to making a difference in the fight for freedom through the power of business. The month of January was designated National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month by the prior administration leading up to National Freedom Day on February 1, 2021.
“The pandemic brought many things to a halt but it did not halt the scourge of human trafficking and much work remains to be done to ensure we end this blight on humanity,” said Derek Miller, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber and Downtown Alliance. “As the voice of business, the Chamber can play a part in this important effort. We represent businesses who care deeply, as I do, about working to eliminate all forms of slavery and to combat those elements in societies that would subjugate another person for criminal enterprise, or for any reason. Human trafficking is a illicit but active business, and we must unite as a business community to educate, detect, empower, and support efforts to bring it to an end. I pledge to do my part to help these efforts and to work with leaders throughout the community. Fortunately, toward this end, Utah has taken a leadership role in the fight.”
Employers must become more aware of the immorality and illegality of using forced labor, especially in their supply chains. Slave labor rightfully brings legal and reputational consequences, and it benefits any company to be aware of the practice. Indicators of human trafficking and forced labor include document fraud, large amounts of debt, and threats of intimidation or deportation toward vulnerable communities.
“We welcome the news that Derek Miller has formally joined the fight to end human trafficking with his appointment last month to the U.S. Chamber Task Force,” said Sam Malouf, president of the anti-trafficking nonprofit Malouf Foundation, which he and his wife founded in 2016. “Kacie and I have made this our mission and firmly believe that the more leaders we have like Derek, who can multiply business efforts around this issue and raise public awareness, the closer we come to ending human trafficking. The road remains steep—but sometimes the most worthy goals are an uphill climb.”
The Task Force is organized around five guiding principles for the business community to embrace:
Involve C-suite leadership in identifying risky business partners and locations.
Measure and monitor the problem and solutions.
Work with suppliers and their employees to ensure compliance.
Examine production planning and recruitment practices.
Take action in the community.
These principles provide an organizing framework to raise public awareness, convene and enlist the broader community, and secure funding to combat this multilayered problem. The Salt Lake Chamber is excited to work with members of the business community to galvanize support.
“Derek Miller will be an invaluable asset to the U.S. Chamber in the fight to effectively eradicate human trafficking,” said Burgess Owens, Representative for Utah’s 4th Congressional District and long-time champion in the fight against human trafficking and forced labor. “This form of modern-day slavery is an atrocity, and I stand ready to assist in developing permanent solutions that put an end to this global crisis once and for all.”