At the Annual Conference of the Washington Lodging Association on October 7, Dr. Mar Smith and Sandip Soli, JD, were presented with awards for their leadership and service to the lodging industry in Washington. Mar and Sandip received this honor in recognition of their work on BEST’s Inhospitable to Trafficking project.
As an attorney at Cairncross & Hemplemann, Sandip provided hours of pro-bono legal counsel for the development of the BEST Practices to Prevent Human Trafficking in the Lodging Industry. Sandip also made invaluable presentations at the Inhospitable to Trafficking trainings in Seattle and Tacoma and he has continued to serve BEST and the industry.
One service provider who has worked with child sex trafficking and adult prostitution survivors for many years said, “When BEST set out to do this work, I honestly didn’t think it could be done. I have never seen the hotel industry willing to address this issue. And now they have become our allies, helping us protect vulnerable kids and women in the community.”
Mar expressed her gratitude: “This award is one further demonstration of the courageous commitment by our lodging industry. Congratulations to the Washington Lodging Association, led by CEO Jan Simon and Chair Cindy Fanning, and to the many, many hotelier leaders who are making such an incredible contribution to our community in Washington State. You are leading the nation in your proactive help for victims of trafficking!”