From 2006 to 2011, members of the Crips gang in San Diego ran a child sex trafficking ring of at least 16 girls out of various area hotels. Two of the properties on which many instances of child sex trafficking took place were a Howard Johnson in Escondido, California, and a Travelodge in San Diego, California, both of which are owned by the Wyndham group.
At the Howard Johnson, hotel staff neglected to take any action to protect the long parade of children who were being ushered in to be raped, but the Travelodge staff actually assisted the pimps. Two members of the Travelodge staff allowed the gang members to use the hotel computer to post online ads advertising sex with minors. They also knowingly rented rooms for use in prostitution, charged higher room rates for rooms to be used for child sex trafficking and pocketed the difference, and warned the pimps if police were nearby.
That Wyndham hotel employees are actively participating in a child sex trafficking ring shows a desperate an immediate need for better child protection policies at Wyndham Hotels.
Wyndham does have a child protection policy, which specifically takes a stand against commercial sexual exploitation and requires staff training, which which obviously failed at these two properties. That's likely because such a policy is unenforceable when no outside organization is involved. Wyndham needs a real child protection policy in place, and they need it now.
That's why the Wyndham Hotel Group needs to sign the Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation in Travel and Tourism. Ask them to sign today.
- Director, Media Relations
Christine Da Silvia
- Director, Media Relations
- Senior VP, Investor Relations
- VP, Communications
As a traveler and hotel customer, I was incredibly concerned to hear recent reports of child sex trafficking taking place -- and even being supported by the staff -- at Wyndham hotels in California. To help prevent the exploitation of children at Wyndham hotels, I am asking you to sign the ECPAT Code of Conduct, available here: http://www.thecode.org/
By signing the code, you would agree to the following:
1. To establish an ethical policy regarding commercial sexual exploitation of children.
2. To train the personnel in the country of origin and travel destinations.
3. To introduce a clause in contracts with suppliers, stating a common repudiation of commercial sexual exploitation of children.
4. To provide information to travelers by means of catalogues, brochures, in-flight films, ticket-slips, home pages, etc.
5. To provide information to local "key persons" at the destinations.
6. To report annually.
These steps can drastically reduce instances of child sex trafficking and can help ensure Wyndham as a whole is not liable for the criminal actions of staff members who aid in child sex trafficking.
I will be making future decisions about where to stay based on your decision.
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