Human Trafficking Education Project

Human Trafficking Education Project


Project Approved: To establish a Human Trafficking Education Project for the JLSF years of 2013-2014, 2014-2015, and 2015-2016, beginning June 1, 2013.

Year 1 will have a total budget of $7,000 and a minimum of 5 Committee members; year 2 will have a total budget of $6,000 and 4 Committee members; and year 3 will have a total budget of $7,000 and 4 Committee members.

What is Human Trafficking?

“Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery where people profit from the control and exploitation of others. As defined under U.S. federal law, victims of human trafficking include children involved in the sex trade, adults age 18 or over who are coerced or deceived into commercial sex acts, and anyone forced into different forms of ‘labor or services,’ such as domestic workers held in a home, or farm-workers forced to labor against their will. The factors that each of these situations has in common are elements of force, fraud, or coercion that are used to control people.  Then, that control is tied to inducing someone into commercial sex acts, or labor or services.” 1

If you or someone you know has been forced into prostitution in South Dakota, please contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline (NHTH) at 1-888-373-7888 or text HELP or INFO to 233733. Hotline specialists are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to take reports from anywhere in the country related to potential sex trafficking victims, suspicious behaviors, and/or locations where sex trafficking is suspected to occur. All reports are confidential. Interpreters are available.

 

Get the Facts

Child prostitution is such an ugly and difficult subject that the mere mention of it often results in shock and denial. Many of us believe that forced prostitution is something that happens only in faraway countries, or maybe big cities in the U.S. Or, if it does happen in South Dakota, it only involves those smuggled from distant countries. But, it’s true: children, women and men are being abused and exploited daily in communities throughout the Dakotas including Sioux Falls.  

 

·        The average of entry into prostitution by minors is 12-14 years of age. 8

·        83 percent of sex trafficked victims between 2008 and 2010 were U.S. citizens. 2

·        More than 50 percent of domestic prostitution (sex trafficking) victims are classified as runaway youth living on the street. 3

·        Most prostitution can be classified as trafficking. Whenever there is force, fraud or coercion involved — it is trafficking.

·        The Polaris Project conservatively estimates that a pimp with a “stable” of three girls often enforces an average nightly quota of $500, or $1,500 a night. If these quotas are met consistently, the pimp can make as much as $547,000 (or more) in a year ($1,500 a night x 365 nights a year = $547,500).

·        The FBI has identified the Twin Cities as one of the nation’s 13 largest centers for child prostitution. 6

·        When asked, 89 percent of women and girls used in prostitution (“sex trafficking”) wanted to get out but didn’t know where to turn for help. 8

·        75% of girls who are entangled in prostitution networks are controlled by a sex trafficker or “pimp.” 9

·        Traffickers use modern technology to run their business. Cell phones, the internet, backpage.com, craigslist, Facebook, and other means of social media are used by pimps to give access to clients.

·        The U.N. estimates that 27 million people are enslaved worldwide-more than any other time in history; 80 percent of victims are female, 50 percent are children. 10

·        There are many misconceptions about prostitutes, pimps and human trafficking in general. Educate yourself about them here.

 

Education Resources

 

·        Polaris Project

·        FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin on Human Sex Trafficking

·        Polaris Project South Dakota State Report 2012

·        Truckers Against Human Trafficking

·        Stop the Candy Shop

·        CNN Freedom Project

·        CNN’s Deborah Feyerick reports on human trafficking in Minnesota. VideoArticle

·        U.S. Department of State – Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons

 

What Is JLSF Doing?

The Junior League of Sioux Falls (JLSF) opposes human trafficking in all its forms. JLSF supports programs and legislation that create criminal and civil penalties for those who perpetuate modern slavery. We support the education of law enforcement agencies on how to identify human trafficking victims and to ensure that victims are not treated as criminals, but are referred to the proper organizations to get the assistance and support they need. We are committed to educating our membership and the greater community on this issue.

   

·        JLSF started two Human Trafficking Task Forces during winter of 2012/2013. One Task Force focuses on the law and policies surrounding human trafficking; the second on educating and training the organizations that come into contact with victims on how to identify and respond to victims.

 

·        In early 2013, JLSF voted in a 3-year Human Trafficking Education project. This committee will launch an education and awareness campaign by utilizing public advertising and trained JLSF facilitators. If you would like to host a presentation on Human Trafficking, contact us at jlsf@jlsiouxfalls.org to schedule an event and raise awareness.

 

What Can You Do?

 

·        Re-frame the issue; stop criminalizing the victims. It is unreasonable to assign a label to an oppressed person that implies that she is responsible for her own exploitation.

·        Talk to your school and ask that information that protects children from sexual exploitation to be included in the school curriculum and that teachers, counselors, and other staff are educated on what to watch for.

·        Do you know a group that would benefit from a human trafficking training? Contact us jlsf@jlsiouxfalls.org to schedule an event and raise awareness.

·        Contact your elected officials and let them know you are concerned about the issue and support efforts to end the exploitation of children in South Dakota.

·        Support much needed policy change at the local, state, national, and international levels.

·        Be aware of street activities you see and take note of children you suspect may be at risk of harm and/or sexual exploitation. Do not question your concern. Report your suspicions to the authorities.

·        Monitor your child’s use of the Internet and sites visited, especially socially media.

·        Deepen your understanding of adolescent prostitution in America. There are multiple books, videos, blogs, and websites dedicated to eradicating human trafficking. See the Resources section for a start. Dive in and spread the word!

·        Talk to the boys and men in your life about the prostitution of girls. Because men are at the core of the issue, the conversations may be uncomfortable – but just do it, and keep doing it. To end the prostitution of girls and ultimately stop the demand, boys and men must be part of the solution.

·        Make a donation to the Junior League of Sioux Falls. We are committed to making a positive impact in our community through education and awareness regarding the issue of human trafficking in an effort to prevent and eradicate sex and labor trafficking. One way this will happen is by utilizing public advertising. With your donation a larger impact can be made.

 

Sources

 

1. The Polaris Project, http://www.polarisproject.org/human-trafficking/overview

2. Duren Banks and Tracey Kyckelhahn, “Characteristics of Suspected Human Trafficking Incidents, 2008-2010,” U.S. Department of Justice.

3. Richard J. Estes and Neil Weiner, “The Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children In the U. S., Canada and Mexico,” University of Pennsylvania, February 2002.

6. Federal Bureau of Investigation, Minneapolis Division, What We Investigate, Combat Significant Violent Crime.

7. The Schapiro Group, “Adolescent Girls in the United States Sex Trade. Tracking Study Results for November 2010

8. The Polaris Project, “Street Prostitution” 2010.

9. Richard J. Estes and Neil Weiner, “The commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.” University of Pennsylvania February 2002

10. Free the Slaves, “Slavery in the 21st Century” http://www.freetheslaves.net/Document.Doc?id=1




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