Alliance Against Modern Slavery’s Third Annual Conference: Modern Slavery in Ontario and the World

In his Histoire du Canada (1846), François Garneau promulgated the myth that slavery never existed in New France. He congratulated King Louis XIV and the French colonial clergy for having saved Canada from this “grand and terrible plague.” Following suit, Canadians have accepted this claim despite the historical evidence of at least 4,000 slaves in New France alone, two-thirds of whom were Aboriginal. In 2013, these misconceptions about the history of slavery in Canada continue, and today Aboriginals make up the largest proportion of human trafficking victims in Canada.

Slavery is routinely dismissed as an historical artifact, and there is the tendency to downplay or disregard the historical dimensions of current complex and enduring problems. Confronting the longstanding mythology surrounding slavery in Canada has proved critical to policy efforts to combat this pernicious practice.

This February 23rd dozens of NGOs, law enforcement, students, community members, survivors, researchers, and more will be coming together in Toronto to learn, network, and share about how we can work together to end slavery.

Detective Sergeant Henry de Ruiter of the York Regional Police is one of the guest speakers.

The York Regional Police Force has accomplished ground breaking human trafficking and sex crimes investigations under the leadership of Detective Sergeant Henry de Ruiter. Detective de Ruiter has demonstrated tremendous leadership of the Vice squad and has shown great understanding of the needs of human trafficking victims. Each member works as a team to bring perpetrators to justice.

Since 2009, the York Vice have conducted over 100 hotel probes and have charged over 40 pimps, resulting in numerous human trafficking charges and eleven victims 17 years of age or younger being rescued.

Detective de Ruiter is featured in the W5 story: Rescuing ‘the girl next door’ from the sex trade.

To hear more about his work helping women and girls to escape sex trafficking and from many other guests and experts, join us on February 23!

Tentative Schedule

9:30 – Registration and refreshments

10:00 – SoChange’s David Peck opens the conference

10:15 – AAMS opening remarks

10:20 – Key Note summaries of Ontario-wide situation:

-Sex Trafficking

-Forced Labour

-Forced Marriage

11:15 – Breakout Sessions


-Law Enforcement

-NGOs/Front Line

12:15 – Lunch

1:15 – Musical performances

1:30 – Summary of findings and next steps

3:00 – Conference closes

Click here for more information!




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