Joy Smith is a leader in the fight to end human trafficking in Canada. She has worked tirelessly for two decades on this cause. She is a mother of six, and a former teacher and politician.
Mrs. Smith was a Member of Parliament from 2004 – 2015. During her time as a politician, she made Canadian history and became the only MP to have changed the Criminal Code twice as a Private Member. She introduced fundamental laws in Canada that address human trafficking here as well as trafficking crimes committed by Canadians while abroad. She was also instrumental in creating Canada’s National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking. You can read more about her work during her time as a Member of Parliament here.
In 2011, she founded The Joy Smith Foundation, a registered charity that works to stop human trafficking. Since retiring from Parliament, she works full-time for her organization but does not receive any money from her foundation. Mrs. Smith has received numerous awards recognizing her efforts to fight human trafficking.
What is Joy Smith doing these days?
I talked with Joy Smith on the phone, and she shared with me what she has been busy doing lately. Her website will be updated with these current projects in the next couple weeks.
She just returned from Europe where she spent time working with a few countries on developing better anti-trafficking laws. Her expertise gained from her time as a Member of Parliament is proving invaluable again as she is able to help other countries create similar laws.
Mrs. Smith and her team have just finished making a video about trafficking in Canada, featuring interviews with a trafficking survivor and a former trafficker among others. She is very excited about the work that has been put into making this documentary. It will be a key part of educating the public about human trafficking in Canada. Watch for it on her website in the coming weeks.
This past year, Mrs. Smith finished writing a chapter on her life for a book called Faith, Life, and Leadership. This book tells the stories of 8 Canadian women, each of whom are successful leaders and women of faith. Mrs. Smith’s story is chapter 7. I look forward to reading it!
Joy Smith has also designed a curriculum to educate grade 8-12’s about human trafficking. The curriculum kit will be available on her website shortly. Mrs. Smith has a Master’s Degree in Education and she worked as a teacher for twenty-three years before becoming a politician. Her background in education serves her well in creating an effective curriculum. Mrs. Smith told me that the curriculum showed great success in the pilot schools, and some girls even came to her afterward and said, “I’m being groomed.” The curriculum opened their eyes to how girls are groomed for trafficking and they were able to recognize that they were on that path.
“Working together to stop human trafficking” is Joy Smith’s motto and she particularly loves collaborating with others. Another project Joy is excited about is one in partnership with country music singer, Paul Brandt. She wasn’t able to share details yet, but there will be an announcement soon!
Hilary Druxman Designs has recently released a necklace in support of The Joy Smith Foundation. It features a mama bear and symbolizes her fierce protection of her young against predators. You can purchase it here.
I very much enjoyed getting to speak with Joy Smith and was inspired by both her passion and her compassion. She is a caring, kind, and humble lady as well as a dynamic change maker in Canada. I am thankful for all she has achieved already and am excited for these new projects. I will be sharing more about her and her foundation here in the future. I hope you’re inspired too.