Today we are excited to share our newest research. Survivors have graciously allowed us to hear their stories, and in order for us all to be a part of the solution, we’re excited to share their stories with you.
Two themes in U.S. child sex trafficking emerged from this report:
Technology is playing an increasing role in grooming and controlling victims of child sex trafficking. 75% of victims who entered the life in the past decade were advertised online.
Less familiar forms of child trafficking, including those trafficked by family members or without a clear trafficker, are emerging. 80% of all victims under 10 were trafficked by a family member.
Without survivor input, our anti-trafficking movement risks wasting time and resources — and most importantly, endangering children. We are truly grateful to all of the organizations and survivors that shared their stories and made this work possible.
Today is #HumanTraffickingAwarenessDay, and our research also showed that 2 out of 3 survivors never saw a help resource during their abuse. You can change that by sharing the Human Trafficking hotline today everywhere you have a community on social media.
“Survivor insights keep us grounded in the reality and complexity of their experience so that the best interventions can be developed to defend children from sexual abuse.”
Brooke Istook, Director of Strategy & Operations
We were working at Raytheon, of all places, and the week had started well. But then every day started well, but none had ever ended the way that day did….
Although a year and a half before when I sat with my Niece and Mother at that 15+foot conference table filled with medical professionals, and they continued to counsel me with their understanding looks and consoling words, and even asking permission to go to a first name basis, as they continued to return to their “evidence” that my Son was no longer alive. I should let these important people go to help others, that were living human beings.
That day, like this day, I realized those “Medical Professionals” were not the “Good Guys”, wearing white hats, and certainly not Friends of The Lone Ranger, just like these evil humans that did this evil thing to Our Friends and Neighbors. Which in turn, cost us more than even that, so many of Our Protectors that would never walk in their door after work….
What is wrong with people.
How can anyone delight in seeing, much less hurting someone.
The day was Tuesday, and it was a great day. At least until the guards were suddenly there, with LOADED M-16s no less….
After a while they brought us a television, and our day went to hell in a handbasket, as we watched Our America The Beautiful as she was attacked.
Later, they asked if we would like to go home to be with Our Families, and everyone of us had seen that these guys who were Our Friends never looked away from that television, just like us, except to cover when tears would begin to fall as rain. So, it was easy to say “ah we might be able to get a little work in later”, which startled them for only a second, and then we cried together.
But I do know one thing for sure, because we all said it that day:
I turned the knob and the door cracked open, suddenly the all too familiar smell was all around me, and on me. As I finished opening the door, the smell of my 3rd son drew closer around me, holding to me tightly.
The next afternoon I turned the knob, and as I opened the door and held it, my Mother looked into my eyes and nodded, then my Niece did also, as they proceeded into the big room, moving to the chairs I had marked with my eyes.
The table was filled with gamblers, all holding the winning hand, including the nurse at the far end of the table; she knew her part by heart, and in fact was certain of an academy award, until she looked into the eyes she knew so well….
These people had lied to me since the day before, and evidently thought we were dumb as dirt. Never in my life had I ever imagined the day when the people I respected so much would instead prove to be as low as the most evil criminals.
I listened as each one at the table had their say, then, while slowly standing up, I looked from one, to the next in turn all around the table. I explained the difference in “no activity” with a swollen head, and a “brain stem test”, then I looked into each set of eyes, and said NO ONE WILL BE TURNING MY SON’S VENTILATOR OFF TODAY, NOR EVER.
My Brother called me 3 years ago, and told me to hurry. When I got to the place, he met me at the door, and we went to the young Lady’s room.
Nurses were all standing around staring at the relative, as my Brother asked my opinion. I said heroin???? NO WAY, maybe PCP, but you remember when I was in the hospital and went out of my head 2 different times???? He said that’s why I called you.
When I said, “considering how hard she fell when she was blind-sided, I would have to believe bone marrow was in her system and going to her brain, but apparently she didn’t break nothing”. The nurses looked like I had slapped them.
These people failed to X-Ray this young Lady, missed a broken hip, then left the illicit drugs misdiagnosis on her record to cover their incompetence. The sad part of this is that she had been in the hospital for nearly 3 full days.
My Little Brother was the victim of a poorly trained employee at Insurance Market Place. We got their attention by contacting Our Elected Officials.
However, while filing an appeal, I had to rush My Brother to the ER. Later he was diagnosed with pancreatitis, but sent home without a Doctor doing anything.
To say he was in agony, is like saying a blow torch is warm, because Our Circle on Google had told me so. After over a month, we won his appeal, and he was checked into Parkland Hospital, where he stayed for 4 days then released.
All this time He has been losing weight, and still hurting badly almost all the time.
This week I went with him to his appointments, before Chemo, and for whatever reason, between our questions, it fell out of these people’s mouth that he hasn’t been getting any real treatment due to the drugs in his system.
I believe my Brother got their attention by telling them between Parkland Hospital and Insurance Market Place, they were responsible for him losing nearly 40 lbs and everything else, plus knowing the pain he was in, yet not prescribing him anything.
But now I don’t mind telling everyone that I got my Brother the medicine for pain. I am unable to take anything like this and muscle relaxers, so I didn’t know….
I’m sorry Little Brother, and I have to admit this to all of you, I knew how he was hurting, and I knew his stress and depression first hand, yet I made him even more miserable because I kept thinking I was going to go wake him up one day and he wasn’t going to wake up.
SO, this is for all of you….
First, I checked if anything had turned up on the VA Hospital Drug Thefts, and oddly enough nothing has been posted since roughly the end of May.
BUT, I did come across some very interesting facts:
Doctors and Nurses are more likely than other occupations to form a substance addiction.
Studies suggest that Medical Professionals are more likely to misuse prescription drugs than their patients.
Substance Abuse is grossly unreported in medical community by an estimated 50% and most likely much higher.
*15% of all physicians and nurses will experience substance abuse issues, although this number could quiet possibly be as much as 50% higher
**20% of all physicians and nurses will experience substance abuse issues, although this number could quiet possibly be more than 50% higher
Although by now, I figure you might have noticed at least one or two of your old friends giving you “the look”, then when you all made eye contact, surely there was hidden “eye rolling” and “head shaking”.
But I would bet you any amount of Mammon, or even those Gold, Stairway-To-Heaven Bricks, that you are more than a little happy there are no short, picnic length, excursion rides on the ferry today (which is now yesterday).
You never imagined the remote possibility of this post even being started, much less my eyes darting anxiously toward that blue.. Publish Button.
The day finally came that we believe we were, we must have been adopted.
But, each set of north-sider, Pharisee eyes and ears, would have had no choice, but to look upon and hear my words.
AND, I DO MEAN EVERY ONE OF YOU…. The good part is that I don’t believe he will be too hard on you, but then, who am I to say….
The proliferation of child predators using the Internet to target young victims has become a national crisis. A study shows one in seven children will be solicited for sex online in the next year.
The Texas Attorney General is urging all parents and teachers to realize the risks our children face online, and take steps to help ensure their children’s safety.
Tips from Cyber-Smart Kids
As I surf the ‘Net, I promise never to reveal to someone I meet online my real name, address, telephone number, or the school I attend or give out my photograph. I promise to be sure that I am dealing with someone who my parents know and trust before giving out any personal information about myself via email.
I will not respond to any messages that are mean or in any way make me feel uncomfortable. It is not my fault if I get a message like that. If I do I will tell my parents right away so that they can contact the service provider.
I will be careful when someone offers me something for nothing online, such as gifts and money. I will be very careful about any offers that involve my going to a meeting or having someone visit my house. And I will tell my parents about these offers.
I will never agree to get together with someone I “meet” online without first checking with my parents. If my parents agree to the meeting, I will be sure that it is in a public place and I will bring my mother or father along.
I will always tell my parents if anything I find online bothers me so they can contact our online service provider.
No one should ever ask me to keep secrets from my parents. If someone I meet online asks me to keep a secret from my parents, I will tell my parents.
I pledge to remember that people online may not be who they seem. Because I can’t see or even hear the person it would be easy for someone to misrepresent himself or herself. For example, someone indicating that “she” is a “12-year-old-girl” could in reality be an older man.
I will talk with my parents so that we can set up rules for going online. We will decide upon the time of day that I can be online, the length of time I can be online, and appropriate Web sites for me to visit. I will not access other Web sites or break these rules without their permission.
If someone is on my email “buddy list,” “friend list,” or “contact list” and I only know that person online, he or she is someone I should be cautious about because I don’t know him or her well. I pledge to wait to get to know my “online friends” just as I get to know all of my other friends. I need to let my parents know who my “cyber friends” are.
I can report anything that is threatening or suspicious to the Attorney General’s office by calling 1-(800) 252-8011.
Tips for Parents on Protecting Your Children Online
By educating yourself and your children, you can help make the Internet a safe and valuable tool for your family.
The most important thing you can do is to pay close attention to your children and encourage them to confide in you. They should know that you will be calm and protective if they tell you about something that has frightened or disturbed them.
Teach your kids not to give out personal information such as their last name, your last name, their home address, or phone number, especially in a chat room, over a bulletin board, or to an online pen pal without your permission.
Make sure your kids know not to agree to a face-to-face meeting with someone they meet online.
Instruct your kids never to respond to email or chat messages that make them feel uncomfortable or from someone they don’t know. Stress that they should show such messages to you.
Surf the Internet with your kids. If it is not possible for you to actually surf with your kids, at least talk to them about the Web sites they are visiting.
Place the computer in a public room in your home so that even when you are not surfing with your kids, you can monitor their use. Do not allow computers in bedrooms or the use of webcams.
Establish ground rules for your kids’ Internet usage, including the hours they may surf and the kinds of Web sites they may visit. Post the rules near the computer.
Learn how to use parental controls and archiving features. You should be able to check your child’s email account and review the sites your child has visited on the Internet.
Protect Your Family’s Privacy
Become familiar with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), which requires Web sites that are directed toward children under 13 to obtain a parent’s permission before collecting many types of information. For more information on COPPA, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s Website.
Be informed before deciding whether to give consent. Check a Web site’s information collection practices before you decide whether or not to give consent. Keep in mind that you can give a Web site consent to collect information, but refuse to allow your child’s information to be passed on to a third-party.
You can always change your mind and revoke consent. If at any time you change your mind about a Web site’s collecting your child’s information, you may revoke your consent and have your child’s information deleted.
Be willing to ask a Web site to delete your child’s information. If you think a Web site might already have collected information from your kids, ask to see what information they have collected and request that it be deleted.
Staying Safe When Using Blogs
A blog (short for Web Log) is a website of your own, where you enter information ordered by date. It’s an online diary or online journal that is shared with others online. Talk to your child about blogging. Blogging can be a great creative writing exercise for your child. Just make sure they understand how to stay safe.
Blogs should not contain identifying information that someone could use to locate the blogger or anyone he or she writes about.
Remind your child that once a blog is posted, it’s out there. You can take it down, but you can’t take it back.
Think twice about who may be hurt by something written in a blog. Some bloggers bully, slander, harass and intimidate others. Sometimes they simply have not thought about the effect their private thoughts could have on others when posted for all to read.
Some children have unintentionally revealed information about their families that could lead to identity theft. Teach your child about identity theft and how to avoid it.
Help your child select an age-appropriate blog site and make sure personal information is hidden from public view. As always, check privacy policies carefully.
Read your children’s blogs! Encourage their creative efforts. Children (like everyone else) are sensitive to criticism of their writing and respond readily to praise. You can guide them and protect them by being their number one reader and fan.
If for any reason you fear any one, or have any doubts about your safety, contact Law Enforcement immediately.