Local Events


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Name of event: Power Panel: Sex Trafficking Behind the Scenes
When: Thursday, June 21st, 5-7pm
Where: Deschutes Brewery Public House 1044 NW Bond St. Bend, OR 97703
Cost per person: $30 – First beer free!
Description: Human sex trafficking is modern-day slavery and it’s happening right here in Central Oregon. It is said, that next to drug dealing, trafficking humans has become the second largest criminal industry in the world and the fastest growing crime on the planet. Human trafficking is in our backyard; sadly most people don’t realize how severe it is. Whether this is your first time learning about trafficking or, whether you’re very familiar with the subject, join us for this very informative Power Panel Session.


Nita Belles, Founder and Executive Director, In Our Backyard. Through true stories and expertise from her many years of boots-on-the-ground experience, Belles teaches you everything you need to know about human trafficking in the United States, helping you identify risk factors, take practical steps to keep your loved ones and neighbors safe from predators and recognize trafficking around you in order to help fight it. In her 12 years of dedication to this issue, she has worked in prevention, education, recovery, and restoration. She is known for her compassionate heart, as a friend to survivors, and as a team player who will find a solution when there are seemingly no options.


Melissa Parker, Operations Specialist, J Bar J Youth Services – Cascade Youth & Family Center. J Bar J houses girls trafficked in Central Oregon. Through their Domestic Victims of Human Trafficking Program, they provide education, outreach, and case management helping victims in regaining independence, safety, and stability.


Erin Ludwig, FBI, Portland Division. Erin Ludwig is a Victim Specialist for the Portland Division of the FBI covering the Bend and Pendleton resident agencies.


Matthew Nelson, Deputy District Attorney, Deschutes County

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This event is hosted by the Bend Chamber of Commerce. For more information, please visit their website or email with any questions