Human Trafficking What Youth Workers should know about human trafficking October 2012
Basics of Trafficking What is Human Trafficking?
Response to Human Trafficking • International • UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (Protocol on Human Trafficking) • National • Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) • New York State • NYS Human Trafficking Law
Elements of Human Trafficking 1 2 3 PROCESS MEANS END Recruiting OR Harboring OR Moving OR Obtaining by Force OR Fraud OR Coercion (specific acts in NYS PL) For the purposes of Involuntary Servitude OR Debt Bondage OR Slavery OR Commercial Sex Acts Source: Freedom Network Training Institute
TVPA & Subsequent Reauthorizations • Federal law passed in 2000 • Focus on prevention, protection, and prosecution • A person who is trafficked is considered a victim of a serious crime under US law and has the right to protection and assistance. • The TVPRA builds upon these efforts and attempts to remove “unintended obstacles.”
NYS Human Trafficking Law • Crimes • Class B felony for sex trafficking • Class D felony for labor trafficking • Felony for charges for “Prostitution Tourism” • Services • Provides victims with basic services • Inter Agency Coordination • Interagency Task Force on Human Trafficking
Sex Trafficking- NYS Definition • Profiting from prostitution by: • providing drugs; • using false or misleading statements; • withholding or destroying government documents; • debt servicing; • force; • a plan or pattern of coercive conduct; OR • other acts.
Labor Trafficking- NYS Definition • Compelling or inducing another to engage in labor, or recruiting, enticing, harboring or transporting another by: • providing drugs; • withholding or destroying government documents; • debt servicing; • force; OR • a plan or pattern of coercive conduct.
NYS Anti-trafficking Law Implementation • In January 2009, NYS OCFS and OTDA jointly issued OTDA 09-ADM-01/09-OCFS-ADM-01 New York State Anti-Trafficking Statute, which gives policy and procedural guidelines to LDSSs regarding Human Trafficking. • Human Trafficking Liaisons • Providing assistance to minor victims • Determining eligibility for assistance for state-confirmed victims • Facilitating services through RHTPs for foreign victims • Reporting to the NYS Anti-Trafficking Program Coordinator
Safe Harbourfor Exploited Youth Act • Effective April 1, 2010. • Creates a presumption that a person under 16 who is charged as a JD for a prostitution offence is a severely trafficked person. • Requires the court to proceed with a PINS petition, rather than JD petition. • In certain circumstances the court has discretion to continue with the JD petition. • Court can convert a PINS to a JD petition if youth is out of compliance with court orders. • If funded, short-term services provided by LDSSs (more on this later)
Myths & Misconceptions Trafficking victims have to be foreign nationals. Trafficking requires an international or state border crossing. Trafficking victims must be kidnapped and/or restrained physically. If a victim consented prior to abuse or was paid, then it is not trafficking.
Smuggling vs. Trafficking • Smuggling entails: • A facilitated entry • Element of consent • Violation of immigration law but not necessarily a human rights violation
Intersection of Human Trafficking & Child Welfare Every two minutes a child is trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation in the United States. —U.S. Department of Justice
Human Trafficking of Children/Youth • Minor Victim Human Trafficking • When the human trafficking victim is under 18 years old. • Sex Trafficking, Labor Trafficking or Domestic Servitude • U.S. Citizens, legal permanent residents, or undocumented • Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking • When a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident victim under 18 years old is engaged in a commercial sex act. • Commercial sex act is any sex act on account of which anything of value is given to or received by a person. This includes: • Prostitution, • Exotic dancing/stripping, or • Pornography.
Quick Facts on Trafficking More than 80% of trafficking victims are female and over 50% are children. The average entry age for prostitution in the U.S. is now 13. Estimates of domestic minors involved in sex trafficking range from 100,000 to 300,000.
Domestic Minor Trafficking • Who are the victims of domestic minor trafficking? • Youth of any ethnicity, race, or religion. • Youth of any socio-economic class. • Female, male, and transgender youth. • Youth of all ages. • Vulnerable youth.
Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking • Who are especially vulnerable to domestic minor sex trafficking? • Youth with histories of abuse. • Homeless, or runaway youth. • Youth within the foster care system, esp. congregate care. • LGBTQ youth.
Runaway & Homeless Youth • Runaway/ Homeless Youth • According to the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 85% of exploited children are missing when exploitation occurs. • Pimps and exploiters target youth shelters, group homes, and other services for homeless youth. • Exploiters offer a place to stay, food, a new pair of jeans, at the least some attention. Children with no system of support are at high risk for these methods of seduction, coercion, and recruitment. • NISMART (National Institute for Missing, Abducted, Runaway and Throwaway Children) estimates that nationally • 1.6 million children run away from home each year and that one out of every three teens on the street will be lured toward the sex industry within 48 hours of leaving home.
High Risk Victims • High Risk Victims: • Multiple runaway incidents • 4 or more times in 12 month period • Sexually exploited • Age (12 and under) • Time missing (over 1 month) • Repeat victims • Victims of prostitution/trafficking Defined by the High-Risk Victims & Trafficking Team of the Dallas Police Department, 2006
The Role of Runaway and Homeless Youth Shelters • 24/7 Access to safe, comfortable, non-system location staffed with professional child care workers. • Home like environment, which is crisis free, positive, stable and typically an anonymous location. • Immediate access to food, clothing, medical care and other basic needs. • Ability to establish rapport with caring adults and aid in coordination of service delivery.
The Role of Runaway and Homeless Youth Shelters • Therapeutic model of care which promotes: • Inclusion • Trauma Informed Approach • Harm Reduction Strategies • Positive Youth Development • Full time Case Managers • All youth receive a Individual Service Plan • Meet with Case Manager to develop rapport • Begin the process of Family Reunification where appropriate • Access to school
The Role of Runaway and Homeless Youth Shelters • RHY Shelters can help minor victims by: • Providing a positive and stabilizing environment. • Aid in beginning immediate service provision. • Help with service coordination and after-care support services. • Build rapport with youth. • Help youth leave the streets, the lifestyle and see a way to a brighter future.
Trafficking Recruitment How do traffickers find and keep their Victims?
How do traffickers (pimps) find victims? • Recruitment • From the street • Schools • Shelters, foster homes, group homes, etc • Malls • Facebook • Abduction • Purchase or trade from another pimp
Recruitment • Pimps(traffickers) manipulate their victims with an initial period of false love and feigned affection. • This period often includes: • Warmth, gifts, compliments, and sexual and physical intimacy • Elaborate promises of a better life, fast money, and future luxuries • Purposeful and pre-meditated targeting of vulnerability (e.g. runaways, foster care youth) • Purposeful targeting of minors due to naiveté, virginity, and youthful appearance. • This initial period is critical to attaining long-term mind control over victims. From Domestic Sex Trafficking: The Criminal Operations of the American Pimp, Polaris Project
Grooming • Grooming is a two-stage process prior to “turning out” a girl. • First, the girl is made to feel attractive and wanted. The pimp spends money on her and gives her special treatment. • Sex between the pimp and the girl is always part of the grooming process. From Domestic Sex Trafficking: The Criminal Operations of the American Pimp, Polaris Project
Grooming • Stage two, the pimp will attempt to break a girl’s will through physical, sexual and verbal abuse to prepare her for the “game”. • Often involves gang rape. • Pimp moves her around to break her from family/friend ties. He was real sweet at first, then he began telling me, “You can’t stay in this house for free.” -Sharon, 17 year old From Domestic Sex Trafficking: The Criminal Operations of the American Pimp, Polaris Project
Why don’t victims seek help? • Use and/or threat of violence • Fear • Shame • Self-blame • Hopelessness • Dependency • Victims have become physically, financially, or emotionally dependent on the trafficker. • They have bonded with the abuser through traumatic bonding From “Understanding Victim’s Mindset”. Polaris Project 2006
Why don’t victims seek help? • Distrust of law enforcement • False promises • Victims are promised love, money, safety • Lack of knowledge of social systems • Victims don’t know how and where to seek help • Debt bondage • Victims are sometimes trapped in never ending cycles of fabricated debt and are made to believe they cannot leave until this debt is paid off. From “Understanding Victim’s Mindset”. Polaris Project 2006
Identifying Child/Youth Victims Child victims of trafficking will usually look like the children you help every day. Children will rarely disclose, or even realize, they are trafficking victims. Many view their trafficker as a boyfriend, and the process of breaking that bond is time and resource intensive. Some children may still be under the control of the pimp/trafficker, even after they are returned to foster care, a family home or are rescued.
Identifying Child/Youth Victims Trafficked children often suffer from depression, hostility, stress, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and fear of authority, as well as those who victimize them. Outward symptoms may present as difficult behavior or resistance to assistance. Other physical symptoms may be present, such as pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and drug addiction, may mask the fact they have been exploited.
Identifying Child/Youth Victims: What to Look For? Sources: DCJS (2008); IACP (2006); NHTRC (nd); OSDFS (nd); VIJ (2004) Unexplained absences from school for a period of time Chronic running away (from home or foster care) Frequent travel to other cities Controlled/restricted communication – not allowed to speak to you alone Expensive gifts More than one cell phone Living in a hotel (has key or business card) Suspicious jewelry or tattoo (“branded”) Signs of trauma, fatigue, injuries, abuse or depression Signs of hunger/ malnourishment Inappropriately dressed Fear/mistrust of law enforcement/social service/CPS workers Engaged in sexual situations beyond age-specific norms Has a noticeably older “boyfriend” (i.e., 10+ years)
Identification of Child/Youth Victims • Due to the covert nature of human trafficking, victims can come to your attention indirectly through other means or as a result of another issue, such as: • Prostitution • Domestic Violence • Drug usage • Runaways and homeless youth • Juvenile Delinquents, Persons in Need of Supervision (PINS) cases or Foster Care • Cases of sexual abuse or neglect
Child Trafficking Indicator Questions Are you in school? If you work, what kind of job do you have? How are you paid? Where do you live? Are you able to leave the house/apartment whenever you want to? What are the rules where you live or work? Tell me about your typical day. Are you (or were you) hurt? Were you able to talk to your family and friends? If so, were you alone? If from another country, how did you get to the U.S.? Do you have your documents or does someone else? Excerpt from Building Child Welfare Response to Child Trafficking, Center for Human Rights for Children, Loyola University Chicago and International Organization for Adolescents (IOFA)
Why do providers need to know this? • Service providers who work with children and youth need to be aware of the signs of human trafficking. • If it appears that a child may have been trafficked: • If unsure, you can contact the National Human Trafficking Resource Center 1-888-373-7888. • If appropriate, a referral should be made to law enforcement professionals to assess the situation. • Law enforcement may refer the child to OTDA for the confirmation or certification process. • If no “official” referral is made for confirmation or certification, child may still need services.
Things to Consider Before an Interview Trafficking victims rarely self-identify as trafficking victims; usually present with another form of abuse, neglect, or abandonment Trafficking victims may be fearful of disclosing information due to threats by trafficker of harm to him/her or his/her family It may take several interviews to establish trust and determine if someone has been trafficked If possible, do not take extensive notes during initial interview(s) Child’s parent or caregiver may also be the trafficker Trafficker may lie and say s/he is a child’s parent or caregiver Source: DCF (nd); UK Home Office (nd)
Tips for Conducting an Interview Hold interviews in a private, secure location Respect victim’s privacy & confidentiality Do not discuss the case with anyone who doesn’t need to know Do not expose victim to the media Use interpreter(s) when necessary, but screen to ensure that they: Understand dynamics of trafficking Are not allied with the trafficker Understand needs of child victims (if applicable) Establish that you do not work for the government/police Ensure victim’s cell phone is turned off during the interview (may be used as a method of control by the trafficker) Build rapport before asking about immigration status, sexual abuse/experiences, or other potentially difficult subjects If possible, find out if other victims are being held Source: DCF (2009); UK Home Office (nd)
Tips For Initial Consultation(s) • Hold interviews in a private, secure location. • Establish separation between your shelter/program & government/police. • Respect privacy & confidentiality. • Do not discuss the case with anyone who doesn’t need to know • Do not take extensive notes during initial interview(s) • Do not expose victim to the media • Use interpreter(s) when necessary, but screen to ensure that they: • Understand dynamics of trafficking & are not allied with the trafficker • Build rapport before asking about immigration status, sexual abuse/experiences, or other sensitive subjects. Sources: DCF (nd); UK Home Office (nd)
Child Advocacy Centers What is a child advocacy center? how they might intersect with child trafficking victims?
Children’s Advocacy CentersNew York State office of Children and Family Services