Marriott Launches Enhanced Human Trafficking Awareness Training

Marriott International has announced that on July 30, World Day Against Trafficking in Persons, the company will launch an updated version of its human trafficking awareness training – the next step in Marriott’s goal to train all of its on-property associates to recognize and respond to potential indicators of human trafficking at hotels by 2025.

The world has changed significantly in the five years since the company launched the initial training. COVID-19 has ushered in more contactless and mobile hotel experiences, which can make it more difficult to spot potential indicators of trafficking. The new training builds upon the original training’s foundation by featuring scenario-based modules, a mobile-friendly design, and increased guidance on how to respond to potential situations of human trafficking – critical enhancements based on hotel-level feedback to help associates turn awareness into action and continue the fight against the multinational crime. Additionally, the new training was developed in collaboration with survivors of human trafficking, ensuring the training is victim-centered and the resources are survivor-informed.

“As an industry that cares deeply about human rights and the horrible crime of human trafficking, we have a real responsibility to address this issue in a meaningful way,” said Anthony Capuano, chief executive officer of Marriott International. “The updated training empowers a global workforce that stands ready to recognize and respond to human trafficking and allows our company to live up to our core values.”

Through a collaboration with ECPAT-USA and with input from Polaris, two leading non-profits that specialize in combatting human trafficking, Marriott launched its original human trafficking awareness training in 2016 and made it mandatory for all on-property staff in both managed and franchised properties globally in January 2017. So far, the training has been delivered to more than 850,000 associates, which has helped identify instances of human trafficking, protect associates and guests, and support victims and survivors.

As the company did with its original training, Marriott plans to donate this training and work with ECPAT-USA and the American Hotel and Lodging Association Foundation to make it widely available in early 2022 to help educate the entire hospitality industry.

For its updated training, Marriott collaborated with Polaris, which operates the National Human Trafficking Hotline in the United States, to develop storyboards, select scenarios based on calls to the Hotline, and prioritize the wellbeing of potential victims. Marriott also worked with survivor consultants and ECPAT-USA’s Survivors’ Council to incorporate meaningful input from survivors throughout the training development.

Marriott’s anti-trafficking efforts are part of its broader sustainability and social impact platform, "Serve 360: Doing Good in Every Direction," which guides the company’s commitment to making a positive and sustainable impact wherever it does business. One of the core pillars of the platform, "Welcome All and Advance Human Rights," focuses on upholding and respecting human rights. As part of our 2025 Sustainability and Social Impact Goals, we aim to amplify our training efforts, embed and enhance human rights criteria in recruitment and sourcing policies, and collaborate with the industry to address human rights risks.

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