Monday, October 18, 2010

How Jessica Brought Down a Sex Trafficking Ring

Too often, stories about prostitution are missing something important. They detail the lives of women in the sex trade, but make little mention of the pimps and johns who drive the demand for prostitution. This article from The Boston Globe gets a lot of things right, and it’s worth a read. It profiles Jessica, a young woman who helps to bring down a child sex trafficking ring in Boston. The author also details the control and coercion of pimps, who are rarely the ones punished. Jessica said this about her pimp:

“I had nowhere to go,’’ she said. “He told me that this was it, that it was me and him and if I left that, this was going to haunt me for the rest of my life. He would find me.’’

Read the whole story here. What’s your reaction?

1 comment:

  1. What a haunting story, but an important one to hear.

    Some things that stood out for me: "Nationwide, there are at least 100,000 children being exploited for paid sex, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children... It is happening in mainstream America. The only way not to find it is simply not to look for it."

    And, "Jessica is taking college classes in hope of becoming a social worker. She is frustrated that her juvenile arrest record for prostitution is impeding her progress."

    This is why having a law in place that protects minors from prosecution is so important, and why Illinois is really leading the way nationwide. The Illinois Safe Children Act ends the practice of prosecuting young people who have been prostituted, and instead offer them a safe place to stay and services.

    But, this quote stood out the most: "People need to know what these guys have done." Jessica is right. It's the pimps and the johns who need to be exposed and punished, not those that have been victimized. Without demand, there would be no prostitution.

    What a brave women to risk her life to tell her story.