Relativity Debuts “On the Merits: Labor Trafficking” Documentary at Relativity Fest

In association with Exiger and The Human Trafficking Institute, Relativity examines how AI can disrupt human trafficking in supply chains

October 26, 2022 — CHICAGO — Relativity, a global legal and compliance technology company, kicks off the first day of its annual conference Relativity Fest with the debut of its documentary “On the Merits: Labor Trafficking,” which explores the role of data and AI in disrupting human trafficking in supply chains.

The documentary aims to help viewers understand the motivations of human traffickers, data’s role in enabling and preventing abuse, and how AI and public-private partnerships can mitigate human trafficking. The Relativity film in association with the Human Trafficking Institute (HTI) and Supply Chain Risk Management SaaS company and Relativity Partner Exiger, features in-depth interviews from technologists, labor advocates, supply chain experts, prosecutors and human trafficking survivors.

Forced Labor in the Global Supply Chain

According to the International Labour Organization, approximately 21.2 million people were subjected to labor trafficking in 2021. Forced labor has long been an endemic issue in global supply chains. Suppliers, contractors and sub-contractors create a complex web making labor trafficking difficult to detect.

The documentary tells the story of labor trafficking survivor, Ronny Marty, who came to the U.S. from the Dominican Republic under the promise he’d receive a good job. However, he soon found out that he was misled. While working at the manufacturing company that employed him, he endured intimidation, withheld wages and threats of deportation and violence against his family that tethered him to inhumane working conditions. In the documentary, Marty shares his harrowing story of how he escaped and is now an advocate for human trafficking awareness.  

“Ronny’s story of escaping labor trafficking is extremely inspiring, but unfortunately, if we don’t move upstream to stop the traffickers, they will keep exploiting more victims,” said Victor Boutros, CEO of Human Trafficking Institute. “People sometimes think that victims of labor trafficking must be physically bound or coerced by traffickers, but traffickers use a variety of threats and tactics to coerce labor trafficking victims and create a climate of fear that makes it scary or difficult for them to report the trafficker’s crimes to authorities. That’s why it’s imperative that we form specialized anti-trafficking enforcement units and equip them with the skills and data they need to be more effective at proactively finding and arresting traffickers and protecting their victims.”

Using AI to Fight Human Trafficking

Public-private partnerships increase the quantity and quality of data used to train AI, exponentially accelerating the ability of law enforcement or advisors like HTI to find critical patterns in a sea of data that might indicate human trafficking. In some cases, HTI reported it could take up to six months for their team to comb through data that AI could cull in seconds.

“With a large scale and far-reaching problem as egregious as human trafficking, time is always the imperative,” said Brandon Daniels, CEO of Exiger. “Using AI to deliver transparency into supply chains in real-time to identify labor trafficking is a gamechanger. We are revolutionizing the previously unmanageable process of surfacing modern slavery red flags in a sea of commercial activity and, ultimately, helping to save lives. It fuels our work to know that we have tangible examples where we have collaborated with our customers and stopped human traffickers in their tracks.”

Exiger partners with the world’s largest corporations, banks, government agencies and NGOs like HTI to detect insightful patterns and help find the signal in the noise through AI processes like machine learning and natural data processing. Models built by running open-source data through AI algorithms help find outliers in business practices or patterns that can point toward abuse so investigators can draw conclusions about possible trafficking practices and disrupt them before they happen.

“A lot of companies are thinking of taking risk management a step further,” said Daniels. “Partnering with NGOs like HTI is a moral good that we as corporations — which are just collections of people — have a belief in. There’s not just risk in financial loss to consider, there’s the risk to civil society as we know it. The imperiling of our values should be included in what corporations and the corporate ecosystem think of as risk.”

“Bad actors rely on innovation to survive, and technology has certainly played a role in enabling human trafficking,” said VP of AI at Relativity, Apoorv Agarwal. “However, these traffickers are leaving behind a trail of digital footprints, so I also believe technology — specifically AI and machine learning — will be the key that ultimately unlocks exposing them.”

Partnering with the Relativity Community to Power the Pursuit of Justice

Relativity’s “On the Merits” docuseries provides the legal technology community a true look at important world events and the people who work to redress wrongs. It looks at the role data plays in compelling current events that involve Relativity’s customers, and how technology helps Relativity, through Relativity’s community, advance its mission to organize data, discover the truth and act on it.

“The honor of working at Relativity is helping our partners, like Exiger, tell their stories in novel ways,” said JC Steinbrunner, Senior Director of Brand at Relativity. “Relativity builds more than a platform for technological innovation; it’s our privilege to maintain the story circle that celebrates our community and shares their experiences of problem solving, invention, passion and hope.”

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About Relativity

Relativity makes software to help users organize data, discover the truth and act on it. Its SaaS product RelativityOne manages large volumes of data and quickly identifies key issues during litigation and internal investigations. The AI-powered communication surveillance product, Relativity Trace proactively detects regulatory misconduct like insider trading, collusion and other non-compliant behavior. Relativity has more than 300,000 users in approximately 40 countries serving thousands of organizations globally primarily in legal, financial services and government sectors, including the U.S. Department of Justice and 198 of the Am Law 200. Relativity has been named one of Chicago’s Top Workplaces by the Chicago Tribune for 10 consecutive years. Please contact Relativity at sales@relativity.com or visit http://www.relativity.com for more information.

About Exiger

Exiger is revolutionizing the way corporations, government agencies and banks manage risk and compliance through its combination of technology-enabled and SaaS solutions. In recognition of the growing volume and complexity of data and regulation, Exiger is committed to creating a more sustainable risk and compliance environment through its holistic and innovative approach to problem solving. Exiger’s mission to make the world a safer place to do business drives its award-winning AI technology platform built to anticipate the market’s most pressing needs related to evolving ESG, cyber, financial crime, third-party and supply chain risk. Exiger has won 30+ AI, RegTech and Supply Chain partner awards. Learn more at Exiger.com and follow Exiger on LinkedIn.

About Human Trafficking Institute

Human Trafficking Institute (HTI) exists to decimate trafficking at its source by empowering investigators and prosecutors to stop traffickers. Working inside criminal justice systems, HTI provides embedded experts, world-class training, investigative resources, and evidence- based research necessary to protect victims.

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