Busing on the Lookout (BOTL)
When building an army to fight a crime like human trafficking, members of the bus industry immediately come to mind as professionals with a key role to fill, primarily due to the actions of human traffickers themselves:
- Human traffickers use bus terminals and bus stops as recruiting areas when they’re looking for vulnerable people, primarily minors and young adults, to exploit.
- Human traffickers use busing to transport their victims to locations where they’ll be sold.
- Human traffickers are counting on busing employees to be ignorant of the signs to look for and the questions to ask which would help to spot victims in transit.
Additionally, the diversity of the busing industry itself, from touring/travel buses to metro buses, rapid transit and public transportation to school buses and other private bus lines, including charters, provides multiple ways for human trafficking victims to travel, whether they’re going cross country or just across town, whether they’re still in school or a bit older, whether they’re in a group, with a trafficker or traveling alone. At times, school-age victims are still riding school buses daily, even while under a trafficker’s control, and just before they disappear from normal life completely … unless someone is observant enough to aid in their recovery.
Bus drivers are already making a difference in fighting this crime. A number of them have already recognized things that didn’t seem right with passengers they’ve been transporting. Their calls to law enforcement have resulted in successful victim recovery. If every bus driver and bus station employee could be trained to identify the signs of human trafficking and how to report it effectively, imagine how many victims could be recovered and, potentially, how many traffickers could be arrested!
Busing on the Lookout (BOTL) exists to educate and equip all members of the busing industry with the information necessary to enable them to fight human trafficking as part of their everyday jobs.
- Train every bus driver, whether passenger or school, as well as all bus terminal employees, with BOTL materials.
- Display BOTL materials in bus terminals in the hopes victims will see them and self-report.
- Partner with law enforcement and government agencies to facilitate the investigation of human trafficking cases discovered through the bus industry and disseminate that information to our partners in the bus industry.
Currently available for BOTL training are:
- An industry-specific training video with certification test and certification available for those states requiring human trafficking training as part of CDL requirements.
- A BOTL wallet card, which can be downloaded and printed, or requested by writing the staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Posters for display at bus terminals, which can be requested by writing the staff at email@example.com.
Watch the video
Download the bus wallet card
Click here to download and print our bus wallet card. Make these available to all drivers within your company, school district, and/or terminal.
Email us for hard copies.