Antonie Sadler

Interview by
Published on
January 25, 2022

In this episode...

North Carolina driver Antoine Sadler is part of a large Walmart fleet, and he engages daily as a mentor to new women and men coming onto that celebrated team. His passion is for safety in every part of the industry and this is why he has emerged as a national advocate for building awareness of the terrible tragedy of human trafficking. As a current board member of “Truckers Against Trafficking” (TAT), he has worked tirelessly to help mobilize over 800,000 drivers to be front-line observers of suspicious behavior, while working with local law enforcement to hit the problem head-on. In this episode, he speaks of the magnitude of human and sex trafficking, giving simple ways professional drivers can assist in the fight; he also tells how to access free resources available to aid in the battle. It’s a sober look at this grave and a growing blight on communities across America while telling the powerful ways the trucking enterprise in the United States is helping roll back this serious societal disease. Be informed. Engage. Join the fight! FreightWorks is an ally in this critical effort and you can be too.

Antonie Sadler

North Carolina driver Antoine Sadler is part of a large Walmart fleet while engaged daily as a mentor to new women and men coming onto that celebrated team. His passion is for safety in every part of the industry which is why he’s emerged as a national advocate for building awareness of the terrible


I didn't take it all in until it was actually feet on the ground and when I started meeting different people that's been involved in trafficking on both sides working and also VIC and to hear their story to hear how they come about that life uh how they were either abducted soul into it by their family by their friends

life by the mile delivered by freight works is your 30-minute weekly podcast adventure you'll hear the hearts soul and passions of those who keep America moving join us we're ready to roll it's another exciting episode of life of the mile delivered by freight works uh you know it is wonderful we have industry experts that come in and uh when they're able to address topics that are of supreme importance and of course uh this month in January is national human trafficking awareness month and it is just a wonderful opportunity to have today Antoine Sadler and he's in kings mountain north Carolina not far from Rutherfordton where the home base is for uh freight works here and so Antoine thank you so much for making time to be with us today oh yes and uh thank you for the invite uh my pleasure especially when uh folks are interested in hearing about uh truckers against trafficking and human trafficking all together uh it's my great pleasure to try to get the word out so we can help people live better lives

well you know what i want to go ahead and start with the problem and so uh you're a driver and you're aware of this can you paint the picture of what the problem of trafficking is in america today and i want you to take as much time as you need because it's important for our viewers and our listeners to know that this is not just a little problem it's a serious situation so just wax eloquent and paint the picture of this horrible nefarious cloud that we have in this country of trafficking okay just want to do a just kind of a quick background so like i said my name is antoine sadler i'm a driver with walmart transportation uh i run out of the office in shelby north carolina i am part of walmart's road team and also part of north carolina's road team so i'm very very active in my community and also in our state uh human trafficking back in 2016 uh it was actually the first time i actually heard of the or the tat organization or truckers against trafficking uh beforehand uh i would put it off if i see anything uh while i was out on the road and i was like you know it's a personal choice or somebody just made a choice to get in this this life i've been driving a truck professionally since uh 1995. so that puts me around about 25 26 years someone ran in that area and and i i never paid it any attention like i said you would see things out on the road and i would just pass it off and say you know the local authority doesn't handle it i don't want to participate i'm going to keep moving uh but when i had opportunity to work with tat which was actually january of 2016 in orlando during human trafficking month actually human trafficking day we were there doing an event and uh it's kind of hard to explain the feeling that that came over once i started talking with uh and it didn't hit me when i even did the video when i i did the video training i did i read up on tad i read up on the problem you know human traffic and it still it didn't i didn't take it all in until it was actually feet on the ground and when i started meeting different people that's been involved in trafficking on both sides working and also vic and to hear their story to hear how they come about that life uh how they was either abducted soul into it by their family by their friends uh just different life situations and and it it it kind of reflected back on like wait a minute so all of this i've been i've been seeing since i've been on the road i've been wrong i thought this was a personal choice i thought this was somebody that was out just made a bad choice in life or whatever the case may be and i didn't do anything to try to help i just let it go it was like you had evil in front of you and you let it go and from that point on i i made a patent to him i said you know there's this right here i i got to get involved what's the best way to do this and um i've i've attended many conferences i've i've actually pulled the trailer so truckers against trafficking uh have has their own trailers the fdp freedom driver project uh it's like a rolling museum of all kind of different artifacts videos uh has you know different uh material you can pick up for us you know pamphlets videos t-shirts hats so on and so forth uh pulling that trailer around the attention that you get was awesome i mean people responded and wanted to know what is that what's on this trailer what are you doing you know uh and and the bad thing about it when you talk to people they always think it's a big city problem you know or it's another country you know and and i know i just did an interview with the north carolina trucking association yesterday and when i was telling especially i stayed here in north carolina uh everybody looks at it as yeah it's the small hometown state right you do have a few major cities but it's still a small hometown laid back because when you think of human trafficking or anything you think of chicago new york miami big cities and all your mass population and you know the human traffickers they think the same way you do they say you know that's right you're looking out for the big part but long and behold i'm right up under the radar in these little small towns in these small communities you know i'm right there and it takes a trained eye to spot it out and that's what we're actually trying to do is get the word out to everybody

you know antoine that is incredible now talk a little bit about why trucking in particular can feed this beast why why is it that the transportation industry feeds this beast that is so terrible and leaves so many broken lives in its wake talk about that so think about this as drivers you're in every location there is you're on small roads big roads medium roads wherever the case may be truck stops rest areas vendors hotels motels there is no spot that we're not located as a trained driver you can be the first line of defense to help out people that needs help i mean just think about it every place that a truck goes you know you know those saying if you have it a truck brought it but that means you will have to pick it up deliver it and transport it so you're in every corner of this nation if you the driver was armed with the information to see something and report it you can you can really slow down and hopefully bring to a stop the human trafficking problem that we have i'll give you a couple of quick numbers so uh this is according to uh uh like i don't really like quoting stats because it changes all the time but we have over 800 000 registered and tax trained people over 800 000 all over the country and there's room to grow that's eight hundred thousand there's there's there's millions of us out here driving if it's buses cabs uber lyft trucks rvs even our personal vehicles we're out here every day that's a trained army i mean that that's an army ready to go that's an army ready to go that is that is so good now antoine let me ask you a personal question you know it it it's clear it's clear to me that you have a heart for this it's more than just something else to do where did that heart come from antoine what what peers what pierced your heart to say you know what i'm going to be a front-line defender i'm going to observe things that aren't right i'm going to suit up and show up and step into the fray what what motivates you well let me say this coming from a positive upbringing and it was always talk you know do what's right you know and when i got into driving and like i told you before uh you would see something you thought it was a personal choice until you learned the facts once that happened i like i said i realized i was wrong and i wanted to do everything in my power to make sure that if i see anything i can help somebody i always want to help uh like just kind of touch back on my career a little bit here at walmart i'm also a driver mentor and it's my job to help our drivers improve their way of life here at walmart same thing i do with the road team north carolina and walmart i want to i want i just want to help other drivers improve so if i can do that on this side why not do it everywhere else if i can so good if i can step out of the box and if i can see something while i'm working i'm out here i'm performing a job to support my family so why can't i help somebody else and that's the question that everyone needs to ask themselves why not that is that is so that is so good antoine that is so good and you know you would know this better than most it's more than statistics these are real people these are real people that we're talking about and i i don't share it real broadly but i'll share it here this whole issue became very personal to me when a youngest daughter in the face of a lot of life challenges made the unfortunate step into addiction and when you're somebody that's dealing with ib drugs it's that world that quickly leads you into trafficking and other things and so as a father antoine i've had the unfortunate responsibility to step in to try to help her at points which has involved me talking to a pimp before and it's tragic i mean it brings tears to your eyes and it puts you on your knees and you pray and so to me this is not just some newsweek magazine article it's a 27 year old girl who's on the streets of minneapolis someplace right now who has a father named butch so i'm so grateful for you and the other people that are on the front lines there so you you've seen this to be the case it's real people that are in tragic situations talk about that a little bit and that's so unfortunate and the thing about it when people they pray on your weakness they pray on your weakness i mean you think about any time you're at your lowest point you're open for anything to make to try to get that validation from anybody and us and a lot of times unfortunately it's hard to get it from your family because your family is giving you that tough love and they and a lot of people don't want to receive it and they go elsewhere to get the easy validation uh a friend of mine i i could speak on this uh uh once i got involved i also got a lot of my friends involved that drives out for other companies and he stays in hotels when he uh takes his uh 10-hour break well at this particular hotel he goes in this room and there is a book laying in the hotel room to him pretty odd you know you you normally have some books but that was pretty odd to him he fumbles through it and there's a photo and a letter okay a photo and a letter she's a victim of human trafficking but she's reaching out for help and they're all reaching out it's just we got to see the signs he went downstairs alerted people at the front desk okay the manager at the hotel they called they called the local authority and he gave me a call he said hey i think i got something i need that phone number that 800 number again you know i need it one more time so i gave an 800 number in which i would share that with you and not sure the whole outcome but i do know this that hotel now is being surveyed for human trafficking the management team has the tat number and they know what to look for because they went through all the red flags to kind of identify human trafficking but that's all it took it took that one person to try to make that difference for that one individual that is so good and it's just stories like that you you know you you can hear a lot of the tragic stories but it's stories there's people like that's out there willing to step in and try to figure out what can i do and how should i do it you know i tell everyone make sure you know call local authorities call 9-1-1 call the tat hotline try not to jump in on your own i like to say i have a running joke when i train one-on-one i said now a lot of us you got a s on your chest you was born on krypton then we're good to go you jump right in but right alert someone and get that extra help i i don't want any driver or manager or any person putting their personal putting their life in danger you know you never know what you're going up against when you when you're approaching people like that but kudos to you because that was the first step and i know that was a natural instinct of protection that you felt you had to go out and make that happen and one thing's for sure uh she knows she's loved and it will it'll it'll turn around it it for us it may seem like a lifetime because you want an instant you want an instant result but these things take time it took time to get to that situation it'll also take time to come out of it antoine you are so inspiring and i can just imagine that there are people that want to help and we're going to do this a couple of times throughout the broadcast can you tell people what that 800 number is and when they call it what can they expect so tell them what the number is a couple of times tell them what that number is for and we'll do this at the end of the podcast as well so to reach out if you see any question or activity is 1-888-3737-8888

and that's in the u.s now for the ones that travel outside the country we also have a number for Canada okay it's one eight hundred two two two tips 1-800-222

tips okay that's in Canada in Mexico zero one eight hundred five five three zero zero zero okay zero one eight hundred five five three zero zero zero and that is in Mexico so and also there is a text line you can text info or help to be free okay capital be f e I'm sorry f r e e the number is two-three three seven three three you can also text that if you're on your line uh the number is anonymous so you don't have to give your name or anything like that but here are some of the key things that you want to do when you call those numbers

you want to give uh descriptions of what you see okay give descriptions of what you see uh i know profiling is not uh we don't want you to go off of profiling no don't go by a certain way of person uh for skin color or where they're dressed we're not interested that's not what we want to see but a lot of times if you can error on the side of caution then that's fine because if you're wrong then you're okay but if you're right that's the that's the question if you're right is the question but descriptions tell me what you see locations where are you truck stop rest area mile marker interstate street name corner where are you give us a location where are you okay and alert others don't be alone you're not alone not unless you're on your own but if you are in a truck stop go talk to someone inside alert a manager alert one of the clerks you know alert somebody is working inside unload another driver okay if you're at a hotel front desk maybe maybe the uh maybe housekeeping you know they're going in and out of different rooms maybe housekeeping you know uh whatever location two is always better than one that's that's biblical by the way so always at you know find someone an add-on if you see something good grab somebody else say hey you see you confirm it you see that ask that question then both of you you don't have to approach but now you got two that's verified go ahead and make the call alert rate the local people for different companies with tat you can order wallet cards i'll hold up one you can have stickers on the side of your truck that that's that's like a beacon to someone that needs help if you're parked at a truck stop or a rest area and they see that sticker they make they may approach you for some help be willing to help

you know a lot of people they do have policies where we don't give rise to people but let them sit inside your cab they may think for the one that has them out there oh that's a potential customer but what you're doing you're shielding them from the problem you have them protected now they're inside with you make the call have them sit right there talk to them ask them a few questions ask them so where are you from who are you here with do you need help you know folks we're with antoine sadler he's a professional driver season's driver with walmart he's a driver mentor beyond that he's with truckers against trafficking he is giving incredible insights on the problem and how you could be part of the solution we'll come back around to that number uh at the end we also want to make sure that you know that life of the mile delivered by freightworks is our attempt to prevent this kind of thing from happening in this particular episode during national human trafficking awareness month is designed to let you know there's a problem but as antoine is so ably said all of us can be involved in the solution now antoine talk a little bit about what you see in the days ahead with tad you know you're going to grow you've got 800 000 drivers but what are what are some things that you see up around the corner we know this problem is as old as time itself so it's not going to go away but what do you see coming ahead oh as a board member i'm on the uh board of directors with truckers against trafficking i see great things uh we are out in different locations so back in october we were at the ata conference in nashville uh we're scheduled to be in louisville kentucky at mats mid-america truck show great we will be there and we want to see you when you're there okay it's already been spoken okay uh we travel around and matter of fact right here in north carolina the freedom driver project director is now in charlotte she lives in charlotte uh yes so right here if we need anything done in north carolina we we got direct we got now we got two people right here myself and also the director over over the freedom driver project now you have three you got you got you got the freightworks people right here in rutherfordton so we need to figure out a way to get together we need to get together reach one teach one so now we're adding on already along with the net the north carolina trucking association network along with other state trucking association network i see everyone getting involved when i was in nashville i gave the analogy of fertile soil and and this is how i broke this down when everybody's saying well you know it's coming from other places and i said well let me let me let me educate you on this one if you have fertile soil things will grow okay but if everyone gets involved and that's what i see i see everyone getting involved the ground will not be fertile this problem will cease to grow because everyone will take a stand and say no more and then people that's victims they will see they will they will feel and see the love the help the outreach and they will say no more right now this is a multi-billion dollar industry but as those dollars go down even the ones that's doing the trafficking will say no more because if there is nothing there to profit from if there is no one there to participate you have no industry you will we can actually start laying some people off we can we can create a recession on that side exactly which is what we definitely want to do and you know what the human cost of all of this needs to really be understood we're talking about high rates of suicide among people that are trafficked high rates of chemical dependency addiction dislocation of families it's a world of tremendous dark despair and you know what antoine i just have to tell you that the light and the life that you're bringing as a driver that's an advocate and a voice out into the marketplace saying hey we can all do something about this is tremendously inspiring i just know and believe that there are going to be people that look at the youtube channel life of the mile delivered by freightworks and all of the podcast platforms that we're on and you will stir some people up to get on board so with the remaining time that we have i want to give you two minutes and i want you to imagine you've got thousands of drivers that are listening i want you to from your heart inspire them to become part of this movement to get rid of this terrible tragedy that we have in america go ahead so my one thing is this and i'll put this out to everyone think it was somebody that was in your house

think if it was somebody that's really near and dear to you what would you do what would you do you would go to the ends of the earth to make sure that person is safe and sound that's all we're asking go to the end of the earth to make sure these people are safe and sound that's all we're asking so make it a personal choice of your own and reach out here's how you can arm yourself again i mentioned the phone number also the wallet card and you can get those from our website but the biggest thing is this we're all we all we all have cell phones now smartphones download the app go to your google store or go to your apple play store and download truckers against trafficking there's tons of information there's tons of updates the phone number red flags everything you need books to read uh documentaries to listen to and watch that i'm featured in one by the way called be the one that was wonderful few years ago uh check out everything that we have to offer to arm yourself because once you do that and then carry it on teach the next driver even if they you might get a few that's a little hesitant but at least they're educated because it's like this once you get the information you might store it in the back your mind but if you see something it's going to come to the forefront and you will the natural instinct will be to jump in and help out and that's all we're asking

powerful powerful folks this is antwon sadler he is a professional driver with walmart he's a driver mentor he's on the board of truckers against trafficking but more than that he is a professional driver with a heart to address an issue he is given a clarion call for everyone to come on board we want to encourage you to follow the advice and the exhortation that he's given and antoine i already know this we're going to want to have you back on to talk about a lot of different things you've got a tremendous heart and you know what i want to say this you know in a way that's not reckless or loose god's really put you in a position to mobilize a lot of people and it's an important and sacred service so our thoughts and our prayers are behind you freightworks of course as a company is organized around biblical principles and an outgrowth of that is we're very much behind what you're doing joyce sequeira our vice president of operations actually was the one that put us on to having you as a guest you're a neighbor in north carolina you're a brother i look forward to the opportunity of us getting together and and really having the opportunity to map out what we could do together to address this problem now offline i want you to text me and tell me if you want this hat this hat or that yeti mug we won't make you do that publicly but you text me and we'll make sure we get an address and send that to you this is life of the mile delivered by freightworks antoine sadler professional driver with walmart driver mentor on the board of truckers against trafficking he has given us incredible insights today you've been very inspiring i know the hearts minds and behaviors of people are going to be touched and antoine it's just a blessing i know you and i are going to get to know each other i can feel it in here so grateful honor and a pleasure to be on your show uh everyone listening uh they reached out because they wanted to get this information out and when when when people are interested like that and really have that heart to reach out and learn and and educate i am here for it and i greatly greatly appreciate the opportunity

wonderful this is life by the mile delivered by freight works we are here twice a week on podcast platforms everywhere in our youtube channel make sure that you hit the subscribe button Antoine Sadler have a blessed day you've been a blessing to us yes and thank you and God bless you thanks for watching this episode you know life by the mile delivered by freight works is one of the newest largest and fastest-growing podcast actually produced by a trucking company now we want you to like and share this episode if you'd like to see more episodes click here and make sure that you subscribe to this channel by clicking here we'll see you there

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