Speaker Profiles

Joy Smith, M.Ed., B.Ed.

Joy Smith, M.Ed., B.Ed.

Member of Parliament for Kildonan-St. Paul

Founder and President of the Joy Smith Foundation

Joy Smith holds a Bachelor's Degree (B.Ed.) and a Master's Degree (M.Ed.) in education. Joy Smith is recognized as Canada’s leading anti-human trafficking advocate and has united Canadians from coast to coast in the fight against modern day slavery. Since being elected as a member of parliament in 2004, she has worked with leaders at the federal and international levels to advance legislation and initiatives to combat modern day slavery and provide assistance to survivors of human trafficking. In 2007, MP Smith’s motion, calling on Canada to adopt a comprehensive strategy to combat human trafficking worldwide, was unanimously adopted by the Canadian House of Commons. In 2010, MP Smith’s Bill C-268 was adopted by the Canadian Parliament and created a new criminal offence for child trafficking with tough minimum sentences. In September 2010, MP Smith released a proposal for a National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking called Connecting the Dots and on June 6, 2012, the federal government launched Canada’s first National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking based on her proposal. In 2012, MP Smith’s Bill C-310 was adopted by the Canadian Parliament and extends extraterritorial jurisdiction to Canada’s human trafficking laws.

Founder and President of the Joy Smith Foundation
Inspired by her son’s experience working as a police officer in the Integrated Child Exploitation Unit (ICE) Joy Smith founded the Joy Smith Foundation on October 27, 2012. It is the first of its kind in Canada. With over a decade of front line experience rescuing victims of human trafficking, Joy Smith was moved to launch the Foundation to fill an important gap in the not-for-profit charity sector.
The mission of the Joy Smith Foundation is to educate the public about human trafficking in Canada and to provide funds and support to front-line organizations that rescue and rehabilitate victims. Since the Foundation’s launch, funds have been dispersed in more than four provinces, helping numerous victims of human trafficking restore their lives. Joy Smith continues to work with victims of sexual exploitation and forced labour, advocates, and law enforcement through the Joy Smith Foundation by raising awareness and providing tangible support to organizations dedicated to ending human trafficking.

Joy Smith is the recipient of numerous awards for her work including the YMCA Woman of Distinction Award (2012), United Nations Women Canada Recognition of Achievement Award (2011), the Ceremonial Red Shawl from Canada’s First Nations people (2011), the Ratanak Wilberforce Award (2010), Soroptimist International’s inaugural Joy Award, and [free-them]’s inaugural iStand Award.

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