Arizona AG partners with Tribal Council to create training program on human trafficking

As a way to address the unique challenges Indigenous communities face concerning human trafficking, the Arizona Attorney General’s Office has entered into a partnership with the Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (ITCA) to launch a first-of-its-kind Train the Trainer program.

The program is geared toward developing a curriculum to create awareness and prevention resources on human trafficking and missing and murdered Indigenous People in tribal communities across Arizona.

“In the fight against human trafficking, the two most important components are education and awareness,” Rachelle Lumpp, the anti-human trafficking program manager at the AGO, told the Arizona Mirror. “The more people we can educate about what (human trafficking) looks like, the safer our communities are gonna be.”



The partnership between the AG’s Office and ITCA involves developing a culturally appropriate training program that will be available to all 22 tribes in Arizona. 

“Tribes have elevated the issues of human trafficking and missing or murdered Indigenous People to my office, and I plan to address these issues directly,” Attorney General Kris Mayes said. “Our goal will be to increase awareness to help with prevention of human trafficking and move toward healing.”

The training program will focus on awareness and set the foundation for prevention. The program will be free to tribal communities across the state, including schools and businesses.  

“We value this partnership with the Office of the Attorney General because we feel supported in our effort to protect our communities,” said Inter Tribal Council of Arizona Executive Director Maria Dadgar. “Working with Attorney General Mayes will bring added resources and expertise that is rarely available to tribes.”

According to the AG’s Office, Arizona’s geographic position easily facilitates travel between points in California, Las Vegas, and Mexico, which can draw tourists. Those same factors are also appealing to traffickers. 

Lumpp said the AG has offered prevention resources and presentations about human trafficking for nearly 10 years, but there have never been resources geared specifically toward Indigenous communities.

Lumpp said her office had nothing that dealt with the specific and unique cultural issues or jurisdictional issues that tribes have in Arizona. 

“We kind of saw a need for that to be specific and tailored to those communities,” she said. Through the curriculum, the AG’s Office intends to train trainers in tribal communities who can go into their communities and teach about the anti-human trafficking program. 

“This is a very important issue in their own communities,” Lumpp said. These trainers will become experts in the subject matter, which will help them identify the people who will benefit most from the resources.

“We’re hoping to train members from all 22 federally recognized tribes here in Arizona,” Lumpp said. They intend to develop a comprehensive curriculum that will train people within Indigenous communities interested in becoming trainers for their own community.

The curriculum that trainers will present will be about an hour long, and they’re going to be providing basic human trafficking information, as well as breaking down the elements of human trafficking crimes, Lumpp said. 

They’ll go over some of the common myths and misconceptions, the different tactics that traffickers use to recruit and groom victims, the role that social media plays in recruitment, identifying victims, and being able to catch red flags when you’re interacting with people.

Lumpp said the culturally specific information included within the curriculum would relate to crimes like human trafficking, intimate partner violence, and the correlation with missing and murdered Indigenous people.

“We’ll dive into the historical and cultural intergenerational trauma that is like a precursor to a lot of these matters that exist today,” Lumpp said. 

Working with the ITCA, Lumpp said they are recruiting trainers from tribes across Arizona to participate in the curriculum with the hopes of them returning to their communities to share the information through presentations and training. 

“In the fight against human trafficking, the two most important components are education and awareness,” she said, and through this program, they hope to educate as many people as possible. “The more people we can educate about what (human trafficking) looks like, the safer our communities are gonna be.”

Through the educational resources available through the AG’s Office, Lumpp said they try to reach as many people as possible. Still, they recognize that tribes have a unique culture and history different from most of the state.

“We want to be sensitive to that, and we wanna honor those traditions and that culture,” she said, which is why the partnership with ITCA was so important. 

Lumpp said through this program they would also be developing a data reporting system, which will help them track the training statistics.

The AGO and ITCA Train the Trainer program is expected to launch this spring. For more information about the program or are interested in participating, contact Rachelle Lumpp at [email protected] or Madison Fulton at [email protected].

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