IT’S NOT JUST AN “INTERNATIONAL” ISSUE.
You may have heard the term “sex trafficking” and thought that it was just an international issue. While the term trafficking may conjure images of desperate illegal immigrants being forced into prostitution by human smugglers, over 80 percent of victims in 2011 confirmed sex trafficking cases in this country were American citizens. Or, maybe, you heard about the recent case in Ohio where three girls were kidnapped and kept as sex slaves…and you thought it was just one guy with a serious problem.
Think again. It’s happening in plain sight, and you probably don’t even realize it.
WOMEN & GIRLS80% of sex trafficking victims are women and girls and up to 50% are minors. (U.S. State Department)
ABUSED AS A CHILD90% of prostituted women have been physically abused as children (Encyclopedia of Women and Gender).
LINKED TO ORGANIZED CRIME70% of sex trafficking is linked to organized crime (Real Stories: Legal Efforts to Curb Sex Trafficking).
ATTEMPT SUICIDE75% of prostituted women have attempted suicide (Prostitution: Factsheet on Human Rights Violations).
12-14 is the average age for girls trafficked into prostitution in the United States.
PIMP’S YEARLY INCOME
Working nearly seven days a week, four women meeting a daily quota of $500 per night would earn their pimp an estimated $632,000 according to the research of the Polaris Project.
WHERE IT’S HAPPENING
Did you know that women and children are being forced, frauded, and coerced into what amounts to sexual slavery?
Whether a “date” is acquired on Craigslist.com or Backpage.com or by calling a number on a newspaper ad, escort services are nothing more than thinly-veiled prostitution.
There are over 4,000 brothels disguised as fake massage businesses in the United States according to online lists meticulously updated by “johns” on a daily basis.
Often insulated from local communities, truck stops and welcome centers are convenient places for transient customers to purchase sex with minimal concerns of detection.
STREETS, MOTELS, RESIDENTIAL
While you may think of a prostitute walking down the street, it’s more likely that she’s living and working out of a motel or local residence and setting up “dates” via phone.
WHAT WE’RE LAUNCHING
In an effort to raise awareness of sex trafficking in the US and promote positive solutions, we are launching:
Executive produced and narrated by Natalie Grant and released into stores nationwide by Word Films on 12.23.2014, the feature-length documentary features six modern-day abolitionists as they fight sex trafficking across America. Journeying to six US cities, the documentary opens the viewer’s eyes to what’s happening down the street “in plain sight”. Through engaging interviews with numerous victims of sex trafficking, the force, coercion, and deception of the children and women becomes apparent. In the midst of the darkness, stories of hope and freedom emerge as each survivor shares how she was impacted through the work of a sex trafficking aftercare home.
31 DAY STUDY GUIDE
Available on Amazon.com now and released into stores nationwide on 12.23.2014, the IN PLAIN SIGHT: 31 Day Devotional & Group Study Guide is a faith-based journey to understand God’s heart for the vulnerable and broken within our world. While stories of sex trafficking survivors and abolitionists will be interwoven each week, the workbook is designed to be read as a daily devotional and discussion guide – challenging you and your group to cultivate compassion and start taking action in your own community.
To help fund the work of Hope for Justice and released into stores by Word Records on 12.23.2014, we have compiled an accompanying music album featuring hymns recorded by well-known artists who turn our attention to the hope and healing needed to overcome this darkness. Not only is this an album that can be enjoyed on your own, we hope you’ll utilize the songs in a time of weekly worship as you gather with your small group (lyrics included in the back of the group study guide).
We’ve assembled a dedicated team of professionals to produce IN PLAIN SIGHT including: