In 2012, a local bike shop, Veloce Velo approached Seattle Against Slavery about the possibility of putting together an early-season organized bike ride to support efforts to fight Human Trafficking in Western Washington. They introduced SAS to Cycle the WAVE (Women Against Violence Everywhere), a non-competitive, all-women’s cycling event that is now in its 10th year held in Bellevue, WA.
The Wave Foundation (TWF), the non-profit organization that oversees Cycle the WAVE, agreed to help guide the efforts of this new anti-trafficking ride, and PATH: Pedal Against Trafficking Humans was born.
Human trafficking is the use of force, fraud or coercion to compel a person into any form of labor against their will. Human trafficking can occur in any industry, including agriculture, construction, domestic service (housekeeper, nanny), restaurants, salons, commercial sex work, massage parlors, and small businesses.
Victims of human trafficking can include:
Children who are lured or forced into commercial sex trade/prostitution
Adult sex trafficking
Involuntary domestic servitude
Forced child labor
Debt bondage among migrant workers
Victims are lured away from family and friends by the promise of a better life. They are forced to perform both legal and illegal work ranging from prostitution to exotic dancing, street peddling to housekeeping, child care to construction and landscaping. Some victims are forced to work in restaurants, nail salons and factories. They are drawn into servile marriages or criminal activities.
About Seattle Against Slavery
Seattle Against Slavery (SAS) is a grassroots coalition working to make a slave-free world, one city at a time. Uniting community-based abolition activists, local and national non-government organizations, government agencies, and other coalitions, SAS seeks to raise human trafficking awareness and mobilize the public to better advocate for victims, enhance survivor care, promote legislation to combat human trafficking, and help service providers build capacity.