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Human trafficking is a heinous crime that devastates victims, survivors, their families, communities and society as a whole.

April 1, 2021

Whitby, Ontario       

Human trafficking is a heinous crime that devastates victims, survivors, their families, communities and society as a whole. It also disproportionately affects women and girls, as well as vulnerable and marginalized individuals. The Government of Canada is committed to ending human trafficking in all its forms, including sexual exploitation and forced labour.

Today, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Pickering–Uxbridge, Jennifer O’Connell, on behalf of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, the Honourable Bill Blair, announced over $337,000 over four years to the Victim Services of Durham Region for their That’s Sus!: Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Online Game. This funding is made available under the Contribution Program to Combat Serious and Organized Crime.

This project, in partnership with Studio Jayne, will develop a youth-informed and interactive online game to raise awareness of human trafficking and how it presents itself through simulation scenarios, which will draw on the experiences of human trafficking survivors.

This funding will go towards the creation of the online game, the development of a widely accessible website featuring the game and other human trafficking prevention resources, and marketing to ensure these resources are available to at-risk youth across Canada. 

“The Government of Canada is proud to support this innovative project, which will inform at-risk youth of the warning signs of human trafficking in an effective and safe manner. Through projects like this one, we are working together to build a safer and more resilient Canada, where all people are protected from human trafficking and its harms.”

– The Honourable Bill Blair, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

“Human trafficking is an abhorrent form of gender-based violence, and our government is taking strong action to end it. I was pleased to announce this funding to the Victim Services of Durham Region for their project to raise awareness of human trafficking among at-risk youth. Informed by youth, this project will help keep at-risk young Canadians safe from human trafficking.”

– Jennifer O’Connell, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Pickering–Uxbridge 

“Victim Services of Durham Region thanks the Government of Canada for supporting our endeavors to raise awareness of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. By partnering with Studio Jayne to leverage the power of design and technology, That’s Sus! will best reach the most vulnerable teens in an online format they can relate to. In light of the pandemic and the challenges with isolation and mental health, this is more necessary than ever for high-risk youth.”

– Carly Kalish, Executive Director, Victim Services of Durham Region

Mary-Liz Power

Press Secretary 

Office of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

mary-liz.power@canada.ca