Contact Lisette Arsuaga 213-365-1906 ext. 118

The Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST) is one of twelve organizations nationwide that was awarded funds from the Administration for Children and Families' Office of Refugee Resettlement, which is housed in the Department of Health and Human Services.

As part of the Rescue & Restore Victims of Human Trafficking Regional Program, the $250,000 award will enhance CAST's anti-trafficking efforts by building a regional framework that will identify and provide services for victims.

Founded in 1998 in response to what director Kay Buck calls, "the most heinous crime against human persons in the world today—slavery," CAST was the first organization in the US dedicated to providing services and advocacy to trafficked people. CAST co-founded the LA Rescue and Restore Coalition and the LA metro task force, has trained over 10,000 individuals to identify and support victims, and has advocated at the state and federal levels for anti-trafficking policies.

The Rescue and Restore Project award allows CAST to continue its educational, advocacy, support programs while building upon its existing law enforcement and service network. CAST will sub-award $150,000 to local organizations, creating a regional coalition throughout Southern California and into the Central Coast and Central Valley regions.

Over the next two years, CAST and its sub-awardees expect to identify and support 350 victims, forge anti-trafficking efforts into agricultural areas, and create a statewide coalition by expanding relationships between sub-awardees, non-governmental organizations, and government agencies.

CAST's sub-awardees include Líderes Campesinas, CARECEN (Central American Resource Center), Pilipino Workers Center, Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Police Department, East/West Players, Thai Community Development Center, Para Los Niños, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA), Koreatown Immigrant Workers Alliance, and National Hispanic Media Coalition.