CorpTrav Management

Not on the Front Lines, but in the Fight – a TMC’s Role in Ending Trafficking

Guest Blog by Andrew Riegler, Director of Marketing at CorpTrav

When you understand ECPAT’s mission “to protect every child’s basic human right to grow up free from the threat of sexual exploitation and trafficking,” it’s an easy decision to support this cause.

Several years ago after learning about ECPAT at a GBTA conference, CorpTrav partnered with ECPAT. When the group returned from the conference and introduced ECPAT to the executive team, there was no doubt – not a single hesitation – this was a cause we needed to support.

Human trafficking and child exploitation is a dark, scary topic. It’s not something we want to think about. As mothers, fathers, sons, and daughters, it’s the stuff of literal nightmares. What’s even scarier is that these nightmares aren’t simply reserved for the deep, dark corners of a faraway place. It’s happening right here in the United States. In your state. Maybe even in your neighborhood.

Traffickers often travel by air to move from city to city. They use hotels to conduct their business. We have an audience of frequent business travelers who are on the front lines.

The more educated and trained our employees, occasional business travelers, and road warriors are in identifying the signs, the greater the chance of helping to save someone.

Learning to identify some of the basic red flags takes little more than your lunch break for a time commitment, but could make a lifetime of difference for someone’s child.

I find myself being more aware when traveling, whether at the airport, on the plane or especially in my hotel. Paying a little more attention to your surroundings isn’t hard. Traffickers count on the fact that most people aren’t paying attention and tend to mind their own business.

Ways CorpTrav supports ECPAT and helps spread awareness:

  • Top member status with The Code - an industry-driven initiative with the mission to provide awareness, tools and support to the tourism industry to prevent the sexual exploitation of children

  • ECPAT training is mandatory for every new employee’s onboarding and orientation

  • We include a zero tolerance policy and clause in 100% of our contracts with suppliers

  • We leverage our social platforms to help spread awareness of ECPAT, their mission, and ways our audience can help

  • We partner with clients and the local community to identify opportunities to promote ECPAT

  • CorpTrav’s senior vice president, Mary Batal-Riley actively participates on the board of ECPAT’s TMC Advisory Committee

As one of the largest woman-owned, independent global travel management companies, we have a responsibility to use our voice and influence in the travel industry to help support and spread awareness for ECPAT’s mission. As human beings, we need to join together and put an end to human trafficking and the sexual exploitation of children.

ECPAT-USA Invites Thought Leaders in the Meeting and Events Industry to Join Committee

With the growing acknowledgement that the meeting and events and corporate travel management community are uniquely positioned to combat human trafficking, ECPAT-USA develops a high level committee to support our mission.

Sadly, victims of child sex trafficking are often abused in hotel rooms across the globe and airlines are used to transport victims or used by exploiters to travel and meet victims. One trained flight attendant or front-desk clerk can change the path of a victim’s entire life.

As an industry that is consistently communicates with travel suppliers such as hotels, airlines, buses, and ground transportation companies, meeting and events professionals can spread the word about how businesses can partner with ECPAT to combat child sex trafficking.

Industry associations across the board are getting more active about the issue, creating a demand for tools and resources that will help meeting and events/corporate travel professionals better understand the issue, share information with associates, and discuss the issue with suppliers.

The ECPAT-USA TMC Advisory Committee is a group of experts in the fields of the travel management industry, corporate sales or related areas who will lend their skills to help move ECPAT-USA’s mission forward. Advisory Committee members will provide expertise, feedback, and guidance on the development of tools and resources for the industry.

As ECPAT-USA shared in our 2017 report, No Vacancy for Child Sex Traffickers, meeting and events professionals can persuade both travel suppliers (hotels, airlines, etc.) and corporate travel managers to implement policies and programs to protect children.

ECPAT-USA is thrilled to welcome the following meeting and events/travel management professionals to our committee:

Beau Ballin, Sr. Director, Business Development CWT Meetings & Events, Carlson Wagonlit Travel

Jen Bankard, Education Specialist, Association of Corporate Travel Executives

Mary Batal-Riley, Senior Vice President, CorpTrav

Mary Clare Darland, Manager, Sourcing, Maritz Travel

Lisa Donovan Berry, Vice President & GM, Business Travel Division, CI Azumano

Ruth L. Marion, Owner/Operator, Marion Meetings and Events

Barbara Scofidio, Editor, Prevue

Mitchell Stern, Global Category Lead - Travel, Fleet & Events, Pearson

Ann Marie Verity, General Manager, Accenture/Global Program Management, Carlson Wagonlit Travel

To learn more about how to get involved with ECPAT-USA’s work, click here.

ECPAT-USA and The Code Announce 2017 US Top Members

The Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct (The Code) recently announced their 2017 Top Member companies. Eight companies, two based in the United States, are newly-recognized as Top Members for their “exceptional work to integrate child protection practices into their businesses.” In total, twenty Top Members are based in the United States and are guided through their membership and implementation with the support of Local Code Representative, ECPAT-USA.


The Code is a set of six voluntary guidelines that travel and tourism companies implement to comprehensively and proactively combat the commercial sexual exploitation of children. In order for a company to be recognized as a Top Member, companies must implement all six of The Code criteria within their business operations and report publicly on TheCode.Org website.

“We are encouraged that our Top Members are committed to comprehensive policies and training that protect children,” said ECPAT-USA’s director of private sector engagement, Michelle Guelbart. “The travel industry continues to mobilize on this issue and we look forward to seeing more Code Members join these leaders in 2018.”

The 20 United States 2017 Top Members are:
Adventure Travel Trade Association (trade association)
Altruvistas (tour operator)
Caribe Royale Orlando (hotel)
Carlson (hotel brand)
CorpTrav Management (travel management)
Elevate Destinations*
EmpireCLS Worldwide Chauffeured Services (ground transportation)
Envision Meetings & Incentives (meeting & events)
Hilton Worldwide (hotel brand)
Hospitality eResources (hospitality consulting)
Hyatt Hotels Corporation*
International Tour Management Institute (educational institute)
Maritz Travel (travel management)
Meaningful Trip (tour operator)
Meeting Professionals International – WA State Chapter (trade association)
Nix Conference & Meeting Management (meeting & events)
Platinum Travel & Events (meeting professionals)
Real Hospitality Group (hotel management)
Sabre (global distribution system)
Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (trade association)

* companies newly promoted to Top Member status

See all of the US Code Members and learn more about our work with companies to prevent child trafficking and exploitation.