(A Journey of a Leap of Faith)
OATH was organized in 2008 by a small group of concerned citizens in Tulsa that had become aware of trafficking problems here in our state. The initial mission has been to bring awareness about human trafficking and the activity of traffickers operating here in Oklahoma and to create a victim centered approach to our advocacy.
In Febuary of 2009 the OATH acting director Mark Elam, was invited by representatives from the Federal Bureau of Investigations, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, US Department of State, US Attorney General’s Office, and Oklahoma City Police Department to become the state-wide agency promoting awareness and education about human trafficking in Oklahoma. Additionally Mark Elam was asked to organize and moderate the FBI working task force on human trafficking and network agencies and service providers to join in the effort to identify victims of human trafficking and provide them the services needed.
In March or 2009 OATH was registered with the state of Oklahoma and a non-profit organization and soon after became a fiscal responsible partner with Communities Foundation of Oklahoma as an organization with 501(c)(3) benefits and accountability. Currently board members are being selected to give direction to the organization. Mark Elam is the current executive director and all positions to date are volunteer positions.
In February 2010 Mark Elam was invited with selected other national human trafficking experts to participate in the Bureau of Justice Affairs and the Upper Midwest Community Policing Institute “Focus Group” to review the previous 10 years of U.S. effort in ending human trafficking and to provide a new model for the Department of Justice and HHS Department to Combat Trafficking in Persons.
April, 2010 OATH partnered with Oklahoma Regional Community Policing Institute in conjunction with a grant through the District Attorneys Council, to conduct 8 hour CLEET certified Law Enforcement trainings on human trafficking in every county throughout the state. To date, over 500 officers have attended this training.
July, 2010 OATH Coalition formed the Tulsa Human Trafficking Task Force with over 40 federal, state and local agencies to expose and fight human trafficking in the Northeast sector of our state.
Learn more and how to get involved here.