ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — A nonprofit organization that trains commercial vehicle drivers to recognize human trafficking and report it is seeking nominations for an award to a driver who has made a call on behalf of a trafficking victim.
The Harriet Tubman Award was established by Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT), Lexi Higgins, program specialist for Busing on the Lookout, a program overseen by TAT and designed to encourage more transportation professionals to respond to human trafficking, told School Bus Fleet.
Created in 2013, the award is presented annually to recognize drivers in the truck and bus industries whose actions helped to "recover the enslaved, improve the lives of victims, or prevent human trafficking from taking place," Higgins added.
The event or situation being considered for the award must have resulted in a call to the National Human Trafficking Hotline or local law enforcement.
Anyone employed by the truck, school bus, motorcoach, public transportation, or travel plaza industries is eligible for the award, Higgins said. Dispatchers and bus station employees are also eligible. In 2019, a bus operation, Lakefront Lines, received the honor for the first time.
Kendis Paris, TAT’s executive director, said that American abolitionist Harriet Tubman’s connection to transportation through the Underground Railroad and her efforts to free slaves make her a “symbol of freedom that a trucking and/or busing anti-trafficking award represents,” according to the organization’s website.
The award, presented by Protective Insurance, comes with a $2,500 cash prize and an all-expenses-paid weekend in Indianapolis for the Protective 500 festivities (including tickets to the Indy500 and parade and an award gala).
To be considered for the award, contact TAT at email@example.com. For more information about the award and submissions, go here.
The deadline for submissions is April 30.