Victims of human trafficking have trouble re-establishing themselves in society under their true identity, as they often lack proper identification to obtain a government-issued driver’s license. The webinar’s goal was to help establish a point of contact in every DMV across the nation that survivors could access to assist with their special circumstances in recovery of a driver’s license.

“I am motivated to encourage DMVs to become more proactive to assist in the obtaining of identification for victims of trafficking for the very reason I chose to be a law enforcement officer,” said Paul Steier, director of the Bureau of Investigation and Identity Protection for the Iowa Department of Transportation. “That is to help and empower people who have been hurt, bullied, and taken advantage of. The victims of trafficking have been through so many struggles and to take part in creating an atmosphere across our Nation to help them turn their lives around is inspiring, rewarding, and humbling.”

Some victims come from families where they were never given proper identification, and others had their identification papers taken by their trafficker. Because victims may lack proper identification, they may not be able to obtain legitimate employment or qualify for government benefits; they may be prohibited from opening bank accounts, obtaining loans or even gain housing. This may make it impossible for victims to turn their lives around, resulting in the tragedy of a return to their previous lifestyle.

"ID is the key to a better life,” stated Jacobs. “One needs this key to access housing, employment, healthcare, and education. Identification will bring total freedom. Getting out is the easy part; putting your life back together is where we need the support, choices, and options."

To read more: http://myemail.constantcontact.com/TAT-May-2016-Newsletter.html?soid=1104865328133&aid=JyOV_O9A_lg