Ambassador to lead event on human trafficking

Ambassador Luis CdeBaca will join a panel of experts on Thursday, Nov. 1 in Auburn Hills  to discuss how corporations and members of the public can collaborate to end slavery existing in corporate supply chains.

CdeBaca was apppointed by President Barack Obama in 2009 to coordinate U.S. government activities in the global fight against contemporary forms of slavery.

The day-long Human Trafficking prevention event will include both a Cooley Law Review Symposium and a Conference of the Michigan Abolitionist Project (MAP).

The event will be conducted at Cooley Law School’s Auburn Hills campus and will be simulcast to Cooley’s Lansing, Grand Rapids and Ann Arbor campuses. 

According to event organizer and panelist E. Christopher Johnson Jr., associate professor and director of Cooley’s Corporate Law and Finance LL.M. program, supply chain slavery is pervasive throughout the world. 

“Nearly 21 million individuals are caught in forced labor, slavery or human trafficking globally,” said Johnson. “A significant number of these individuals work in the supply chains of many products from major corporations that we as consumers eat, wear or use every day.”

Johnson, a member of the Michigan Human Trafficking Task Force, was recently named a member of a newly-established American Bar Association (ABA) Business Law Section Working Group to prepare business conduct standards intended to assist businesses in eradicating forced labor in supply chains and complying with the growing number of supply chain laws.

The Working Group will coordinate its efforts with the ABA’s new Task Force on Human Trafficking, established by ABA President Laurel Bellows. 

In addition to CdeBaca who will provide the keynote address, and Johnson who will also moderate the event, panelists include:

• Dr. Vanessa Bouche, director, National Research Consortium on Commercial Sexual Exploitation.

• Janna Lipman, co-founder and executive director, Anka Rising.

• Dr. Shawn MacDonald, director of Programs and Research, Verité.

• Brig. Gen. Michael McDaniel, Cooley associate professor of law.

• Rev. David Schilling, program director Human Rights and Resources, Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility.

• Dr. Louise Shelley, director, Terrorism Transnational Crime and Corruption Center, George Mason University.

• Daniel Werner, deputy director, Southern Poverty Law Center.

Last month, President Barack Obama announced efforts to combat human trafficking at home and abroad.

Both the symposium, titled “Buying and Selling People: Is that Your Business? Human Trafficking and Corporate Responsibility,” and the MAP conference on Corporate Responsibility are free. A schedule can be obtained at