Archive for Thursday, January 24, 2013

KU, Brownback joining to hold conference on slavery, human trafficking

January 24, 2013


Kansas University and Gov. Sam Brownback next week will co-sponsor a conference examining modern-day slavery and human trafficking, KU announced Thursday.

The first-ever Kansas Conference on Slavery and Human Trafficking will include presentations from researchers and government officials and seek to identify potential research and education efforts for KU. It will be Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 at the Kansas Union.

The conference will open at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 31 in Woodruff Auditorium, where remarks by Brownback will be followed by a keynote presentation by anti-slavery activist Kevin Bales, who co-founded an organization called Free the Slaves that aims to end all human slavery within the next 25 years. That session will be free and open to the public, with no registration required.

The conference’s second day will run from 8:15 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 1 on the Union’s fifth floor. Various researchers and government officials will make presentations, including a keynote speech by Alison Kiehl Friendman, deputy director of the U.S. Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. The second day is also free and open to anyone, but pre-registration is required.

Online registration and a complete schedule are available on the website for KU’s Institute for Policy and Social Research,


Fred Whitehead Jr. 5 years, 4 months ago

Huh?? I guess Sam the Sham is trying to find a non-issue to match notes with his Secretary of State who is waging a non-issue war against all the illegal voters in Kansas who are causing a great problem and may vote Democratic. After all, the Governer needs to do something to attract some of the oxygen that Kobach is emitting in his non-issue campaign. Or is it sewer gas.

verity 5 years, 4 months ago

So---they're advocating a return to slavery? I knew that was Brownback/Kochs' agenda, but I didn't expect them to be so open about it.

endcorporaterule 5 years, 4 months ago

Brownback better make sure that his cronies have sufficiently changed the definition of "slavery" enough to offset any criticism that might arise from their efforts to legalize illegal labor:

"Details are expected to emerge this week about a bill establishing the outline of a state-managed worker program, in cooperation with the federal government, linking sponsor companies with illegal immigrants who have been in Kansas a minimum of five years."

"Mike Beam, senior vice president of the Kansas Livestock Association, said the objective was to secure a reliable, regulated labor pool to the state's businesses. Despite the recession, there are counties in rural Kansas with unemployment rates half the state average."

63BC 5 years, 4 months ago

For those who bothered to watch, the Governor noted in his State of the State speech that he and Paul Wellstone [D-MN] co-authored the legislation establishing the State Department office combating human trafficking in 1998. This effort builds on more than a decade of work he has done on this subject.

The hatred and ignorance on this board are really distasteful.

seriouscat 5 years, 4 months ago

What "work"? Brownback says a lot of things that are designed to make him look like a good guy, but like his talk around things like reducing prison recidivism, he passes bills and says a bunch of good stuff and then underfunds them and undermines them with policies that allow more exploitation and oppression. Not impressed.

Well done is better than well said. ~Benjamin Franklin

cowboy 5 years, 4 months ago

Read the headline and figured Sam was bringing back slavery , wouldn't be half surprised.

hujiko 5 years, 4 months ago

Sam's been paying extra attention during bible study.

happyrearviewmirror 5 years, 4 months ago

I heard Governor Brownback's human trafficking talk on Kansas Public Radio in April, 2012. It was informative and well-presented. For some reason it does not surprise me though that Governor Brownback is not trained in ethnography, and thus does not register the ethical issues with outsiders trying to" help" people whose cultures they do not understand. If anyone lacks knowledge and sensitivity in this area, it is Kansans--the same ones who aggressively approach strangers on the street with patronizing offers of "help" without realizing how intrusive, frightening, and offensive they are.

Brownback sees the makers of the Invisible Children video as heroes, but there exists a strong element of imperialism and the "white-savior" industrial complex in all of this. If more Kansans learned to mind their business and not to interfere with individuals and groups they are likely too socially and politically unaware to understand, the world would be a saner place.

deec 5 years, 4 months ago

Will the governor focus his efforts on banning Chinese-made goods being sold in Kansas? Many consumer products are made in the Chinese slave labor prisons. Many prisoners are political and Christian dissidents. Will dollars trump religion?

verity 5 years, 4 months ago

Who will lead Brownback et al out of Kansas?

EJ Mulligan 5 years, 4 months ago

This conference was put together by KU faculty and staff and was planned before Brownback decided to join the slate. It is a legitimate conference with some of the country's foremost experts on human trafficking, including law enforcement.

If you don't believe it exists or don't think it's an issue, go to the conference -- or, at least read about it in the LJW.

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