BOISE — The Idaho Anti-Trafficking Coalition is poised to open a new facility aimed at providing emergency housing for adult victims of human trafficking.
The facility, called Harbor House, will open as soon as the organization finds a live-in residential assistant, according to Jennifer Zielinski, the coalition’s director.
The house will provide an immediate place to live for adults who are fleeing human trafficking situations. It will be able to house six to eight people at a time, according to Zielinski.
Harbor House’s opening came in response to the types of victims the organization is encountering. Zielinski said the coalition is working with as many as four or five new victims every week.
“Our No. 1 priority need is emergency housing for adult victims,” she said.
Harbor House is the latest development from the Idaho Anti-Trafficking Coalition, which recently received grant funding from the Victims of Crime Act. Zielinski said the organization has added seven new staff members and moved into a bigger office space. Roughly two months ago, it also opened the Solace House Outpatient Clinic in Eagle, a full trauma clinic designed to provide counseling services and case management to those escaping trafficking.
“Once emergency needs are met, other needs that present themselves in the short-term are identified and accessed through our amazing community partnerships, and include, but (are) not limited to, substance use treatment, legal assistance, safer community services and supports and, if possible and safe, (reunification) with family members,” Zielinski wrote in a message to the Idaho Press.
Harbor House is designed to be an emergency solution, but Zielinski said she hopes the organization will have a long-term safe house for adults open by November.
A long-term safe house for child victims of human trafficking — those ages 11 to 17 — is still in the works. It’s called Solace House, and about a year ago Zielinski speculated it would open in the latter half of 2018, although that has not happened yet, she confirmed.