The American Association of University Women is presenting a discussion of Human Trafficking at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 30 at Mesa Public Library in the upstairs meeting rooms.
Topic presenters are Maria Sanchez-Gagne, director of the New Mexico Border Violence Division, and Lynn Sanchez, the program director for the Human Trafficking Aftercare Program at The Life Link.
This discussion will focus on The United Nation’s Anti-Human Trafficking Protocol, New Mexico state trafficking laws, strategies for raising awareness about this global human rights issue, outreach, and the trauma informed services needed to assist victims of human trafficking.
Maria Sanchez-Gagne is an assistant attorney general and the director of the Border Violence Division (BVD). The BVD represents the attorney general on specialized cases such as international extraditions, investigations and prosecutions of human trafficking, and money laundering throughout New Mexico.
Sanchez-Gagne was instrumental in drafting New Mexico’s state human trafficking law, and in 2001 she published a technical assistance manual entitled “Criminal Prosecutions under Article 4 of the Mexican Federal Penal Code”, and in 2011 she drafted the “NM Human Trafficking Law Enforcement Training Manual”.
Sanchez-Gagne is also an executive board member of the Southwest Border Anti-Money Laundering Alliance and the New Mexico Sex Offender Management Board. She obtained her law degree from the University of Denver, School of Law, and has prosecuted a variety of New Mexico cases including homicides, violent crimes, child abuse, and human trafficking.
Lynn Sanchez founded and is program director of the State of New Mexico’s text accessible, Human Trafficking Hotline, 505-GET-FREE. Over the past six years, she has worked closely with the Attorney General’s Office to provide outreach, advocacy, and access to entitlements under the law to identified victims of human trafficking in New Mexico. The Life Link’s Aftercare Program has gained national attention and receives requests and referrals from states across the nation seeking comprehensive aftercare services for victims.
Sanchez also is the Program Director of Sojourners Advocacy Café, a program she founded in 2007 and is now a program of The Life Link. Sojourners Advocacy Café is a community based outreach center for homeless and disenfranchised women and their children.