Sex trafficking, prostitution & backpage ads


Barely coded ads for sex, pictured here in the back of a 2007 issue of New York magazine but proliferating in city weekly newspapers nationwide, have been charged with facilitating human trafficking and sexual slavery in cities throughout the U.S., including Philadelphia. (AP file photo)

Hour 2

Sex trafficking doesn’t only happen abroad, it’s become a growing crime in the United States as well. According to the FBI, more than 100,000 children are trafficked for sex in the United States every year and they’re found in all 50 states. Advocates working to stop the sex trafficking of girls and young women have argued that state laws are too lax and fail to protect victims and prosecute the real perpetrators. Today, we’ll look at sex trafficking and prostitution in United States and in Philadelphia. How do we prevent this crime and help these vulnerable victims?  We’ll also talk about the sex ads in the back pages of city weeklies – do they play a role in the commercial sexual exploitation of women? Our guests are MARY DEFUSCO, director of training and recruitment at the Defender Association of Philadelphia and a founding member of Dawn’s Place, a residential recovery program for trafficked and prostituted women in Philadelphia; DONNA SABELLA, a mental health nurse at the University of Pennsylvania who works with trafficked women, and RACHEL LLOYD, a former victim of commercial sexual exploitation, founder and executive director of GEMS, Girls Education and Mentoring Services, and the author of “Girls Like Us.”

Listen to the mp3

[audio: 031612_110630.mp3]

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