Human Traffic Watch

Posts Tagged ‘u.s.a.’

Human trafficking notices debut in Georgia

In Awareness, Human Trafficking on October 2, 2013 at 1:17 pm

A sign on a wall at GRU Medical Center regarding human trafficking is seen Wednesday afternoon Sept. 18, 2013. (Michael Holahan, Associated Press)

The issue of human trafficking is getting increased exposure in Augusta and across the state with a new law that went into effect this month.

Bars, airports and hospitals are posting notices in an effort to reduce the number of people in Georgia who are forced into commercial sexual exploitation and labor servitude.

State Attorney General Sam Olens estimates that more than 28,000 men knowingly or unknowingly have sex with prostituted girls each year in Georgia and that every month, 200 to 500 girls, mostly ages 12 to 14, are commercially exploited statewide.

Alarmed by the statistics, Olens joined forces with state Sen. Renee Unterman, R-Buford, to advocate for stronger human trafficking laws in Georgia, including House Bill 141, which imposes a fine of up to $5,000 for businesses that fail to inform victims of a 24-hour, toll-free hotline they can call for help.

Source: Deseret News


Organization helps sex trafficking victims transition to normal life

In Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 15, 2013 at 5:57 pm

For years it has been known that Toledo has been one of the top cities nationally for sex trafficking.

When 105 teens were rescued across the country from prostitution, it didn’t come as a surprise to some people in Northwest Ohio.

But, if the rescue was tough, the transition to a normal life is even tougher.”Some of these girls have been abused months, days, even years by family members or traffickers. And that’s something you don’t just overcome overnight,” says Jeff Wilbarger, founder of “the daughter project.”

Perrysburg based “The Daughter Project” was designed to provide a transitional home where young women rescued from trafficking can live in a safe place. Inside the house, are house mothers who act like moms to girls who sometimes have no one.

Gaining trust is often the first step to helping the girls. In addition to counseling, victims are home schooled and taught life skills.

 Northwest Ohio


Demand for Child Sex Trafficking in the U.S.

In Child Sex Trafficking, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 15, 2013 at 5:56 pm

Like all the best advocates, they had the necessary points and stories to make it clear to me why demand had to be the driving advocacy objective.

First they shared with me the story of “Tami”:

Tami was kidnapped by a pimp, while walking home from school. He kept her captive for six months, raping, beating, and starving her. And selling her for sex with men every night. Tami thought she could escape her hell by telling the “Johns” that she was only a kid. And so every night, for six months, Tami told the men who purchased her, “I’m only 15. Can you please take me to a police station?” But not one buyer did. According to Tami, they ignored her pleas, forced her to perform sexual acts, and then returned her to the pimp because they had already “paid for her.”

And then there was the story of the girl who was burned to death. She had tried to run away from the control of her pimp/trafficker. To make an example of any girl who dares to escape, the pimp burned her alive on “the track” in front of the other girls under his control.

The girls said that as long as “Johns” could buy 14- and 15-year-olds without fear or consequence, more girls would be coerced into exploitation and trafficking — and tortured if they tried to escape.

Huffington Post

US Lawmakers Introduce Child Sex-Trafficking Bill

In Child Sex Trafficking, Child Trafficking, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 14, 2013 at 5:52 pm


U.S. lawmakers have introduced a bill to strengthen federal laws against child sex trafficking, a proposal that has broad bipartisan support and will be considered after members of Congress return from an August recess.

Earlier this week, the FBI announced the rescue of more than 100 sexually exploited children as a result of a nationwide sweep of sex traffickers. The FBI said the operation yielded 150 arrests, primarily of pimps — those who profit from the illegal enterprise.

Members of Congress say arresting and prosecuting pimps is not enough, that those who pay to have sex with children must also face federal penalties.

“We have a Trafficking Victims Protection Act that prosecutes the trafficker — the guy that brings those girls throughout the United States. But the consumer, the buyer, is not prosecuted on the federal level,” said Republican Congressman Ted Poe during a news conference at the Capitol.

The End Sex Trafficking Act of 2013 mandates that those who seek sex with children will be prosecuted under federal law, which comes into play when there is trafficking activity across more than one state.


Battling human trafficking: Iowa woman tells of being swept into a life of misery

In Child Sex Trafficking, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 13, 2013 at 5:50 pm

Brittany Phillips knew what she was running away from when the man at Hy-Vee told her she was pretty enough to model, but couldn’t begin to imagine what she was getting into.

In the space of a couple of months in 2006, when Phillips was 14 and should have been a ninth-grader, an attempt to escape an abusive home became a descent into human trafficking. She was plucked out of the grocery store, pressed into the domestic service of a drug dealer and ultimately taken to Chicago and forced into prostitution.

Her ordeal is high on the minds of Iowa law enforcement officials today, who fear literally untold numbers of boys and girls have similarly fallen into what is called “The Life” — a circuit of anonymous, dehumanizing, coerced sex for money.

More than 4,000 Iowa youngsters, most of them female, leave home each year as runaways. Many return in a few hours or days. But some are preyed upon by human traffickers.

Des Moines Register

Doing More to End Sex Trafficking

In Awareness, Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Labor, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 12, 2013 at 5:34 pm

Much more should be done to prevent young girls from being vulnerable prey for sex traffickers and predators. Broadly speaking, human trafficking occurs when people profit from the control and exploitation of others. This includes what some mischaracterize as child prostitution. Our nation’s kids do not simply choose to sell themselves on the street, they are victims manipulated and coerced into a life of sexual assault and commercial rape.

A good starting point for reform would be taking a look at the connection between the foster care system and child sex trafficking. Traffickers often provide foster youth with the attention and reinforcement that can oftentimes be elusive during a life spent bouncing from home to home. They shower young girls with gifts and attention to help lure them into a life of illegal activity. Sadly, older foster youth perpetuate the cycle when traffickers use them to recruit younger foster youth into prostitution.

Some estimates show 300,000 children are at risk of becoming victims of domestic sex trafficking each year, with foster youth comprising as much as 80 percent of victims. Many states report abuse occurring while youth are in foster care or group homes, which pimps target as hubs to recruit vulnerable girls.

U.S. News & World Report

Former Child Trafficking Victim Now Mentors Others

In Child Sex Trafficking, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 10, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Each week, Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin brings listeners an unexpected side of the news by talking with someone personally affected by the stories making headlines.

Sheila White grew up in a troubled home. She was abused and ended up in foster care as a teenager. Not long after that, feeling low and confused, she met a man who soon became her pimp.

During the years she was forced into sex work, White was exposed to extreme violence. But, she explains, some victims have a hard time leaving their exploiters.

“As awful as the situation may be, there are needs that are being met,” White says. “If a girl is … homeless, if she doesn’t have nowhere to go, and she doesn’t have clothes or food or shelter, or if ultimately, if she doesn’t feel loved, those are the things that her exploiter is giving her. And he’s the only thing that’s consistent in her life.”

After several arrests, the court ordered White to work with Girls Education and Mentoring Services (GEMS), or go to jail. Since then, she has turned her life around, and she now works with GEMS to help other victims of sex trafficking escape and rebuild their lives.


Sex Trafficking Victim, Subject of ‘Tricked’ Documentary, Shares Her Story (VIDEO)

In Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 8, 2013 at 6:15 am

Sex trafficking is often thought of as a third world problem, something that happens outside the United States. The ugly truth is that it’s a multi-billion dollar business that’s taking place all across America. Danielle Douglas was a 17-year-old college student when she met her pimp, and was trafficked for 2 years before escaping. She shared her story on HuffPost Live.

After making new friends on her college campus, Douglas was on her way to a party when she met her pimp.

“When I got to the party, the person who answered the door was an older man, and there was obviously nobody at the house, so I thought I just kind of had the wrong house,” she explained to host Ahmed Shihab-Eldin. “He basically said ‘oh no, I know your friends — you just had the wrong date, they must’ve gave you the wrong one. But I’m on my way out, would you like to join me for dinner?’ And as a starving student, I said ‘ok, I’ll join you for dinner.”

Douglas and the man developed a friendship, going to the mall, to the movies and watching TV together. “And within two weeks, everything basically switched. Instead of being this normal guy, he turned into a violent, abusive crazy person, and I had no idea what was going on, what to do and I was basically completely surprised,” Douglas said.

“And when I tried to kind of say ‘this is not what I’m here for–I had no idea about this,’ I got beaten very badly. And that’s when the fear started to come in, and basically just wrapped around me and said ‘I don’t know what to do–I can’t do anything.'”

Source: Huffington Post

Human trafficking: Suburbs’ dirty little secret

In Awareness, Child Sex Trafficking, Forced Prostitution, Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking on August 6, 2013 at 10:54 am

While other 7-year-olds were playing with dolls and going to summer camp, Amy was being prostituted on the streets of Texas, Virginia, and Oregon.

By her grandfather.

Now deceased, he pushed her into the commercial sex trade as a prostitute and recruiter of other girls.

Ten years later, a man in the Doylestown area bought the remaining days of her adolescence and became her pimp. She lived in a pricey Doylestown apartment for a couple of years, working in the adult-movie and sex industries.

Amy, who asked to be identified by only a fictitious first name, says she was so inured at that point to her life as a sex worker she didn’t see the wrong that had been done to her.

“I knew what human trafficking and sex trafficking were,” she said in a telephone interview Thursday from another part of the country where she now lives. “I didn’t know I was being trafficked.”


Our Opinion: Human trafficking: Public must know what to look for

In Awareness, Human Trafficking on July 13, 2013 at 12:19 pm

Raising awareness of this epidemic is the worthy goal of a new Kasich administration initiative. The $50,000 public-information campaign is expected to begin before the end of the year.

Human trafficking is, plain and simple, slavery — the buying and selling of women and children, usually for prostitution but also for forced labor. State officials estimate that more than 1,000 children are victimized in Ohio each year and that another 3,000 are at risk.

The awareness campaign will inform Ohioans how to recognize signs of human trafficking and what to do next, including how to alert law enforcement and help the victims.

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