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The Board of Directors for Truckers Against Trafficking has elected its first representative from the bus industry, Linda Burtwistle, president and CEO of Coach USA and Megabus.com. Burtwistle has over 20-years’ experience in the international transportation industry. She previously served as president of First Student and president of First Transit in the United States, as well as CFO of the Virgin Rail Group in the United Kingdom. She currently sits on the board of the American Bus Association and was recently named vice chair of the USDOT Advisory Committee on Human Trafficking. She has helped open doors for BOTL to other bus companies in North America. “I am honored to have been invited to join the board of TAT, said Burtwistle. “They are a wonderful organization, fully committed to their cause. I am very much looking forward to working with TAT and the bus industry to support the eradication of these heinous crimes.”
In the past year, Coach USA has BOTL-trained and registered over 2,600 bus drivers and other employees in the U.S. and Canada. One of these BOTL-trained drivers and safety directors from the Lakefront Lines subsidiary in Ohio assisted in the recovery of a victim and arrest of an alleged trafficker after a young woman asked the bus driver for help, and the company immediately got law enforcement involved. For these actions, the driver and safety director were awarded TAT’s prestigious Harriet Tubman Award, an annual award presented by Protective Insurance.
In addition to training, Coach USA has provided financial support to TAT/BOTL as a Silver Level corporate sponsor, and Megabus donated ticket vouchers for survivors to access. In the month of August alone, five Megabus vouchers were used to help survivors access specialized services.