It is common knowledge that the human trafficking is a $150 billion industry, at least it should be something everyone is educated on. A large number of women and girls make up a big percentage of those that are victimized, but why are they being re-victimized by the justice system? When a tip comes into Vice about a trafficking ring or a smaller scale trafficking situation the first action that is employed is to arrest the victims. The reasoning behind this method is that it’s the only way to get the girls to safety. It will also give them something they don’t want or need-a record. ...read more...
The OVC (Office for Victims of Crime) has recently announced a disturbing language removal in their FY2018 funding cycle. Any pro-bono legal agency seeking funding for vacatures or expungements of a client’s record will not receive OVC funding. This obstructs a survivor’s ability to gain legal council to have unjustified criminal charges removed. Many agencies all across the United States are in jeopardy of losing the financial support to vacate or expunge their client’s record. Without being able to take these cases, pro-bono lawyers are crippled to help a survivor regain their life back wholly. This puts them at the mercy of a system that is designed to keep them helpless, interdependent and always looking for a handout just to stay alive. These unhealthy and destabilizing tactics used by the DOJ supports a cycle of continued abuse directed at the survivor on all sides.
This makes it hard for those of us who are working to give survivors better choices with more options. This decision closes a lot of doors of opportunity for women and young women to start over. As someone who helps them to be independent and gives them the tools to sustain themselves this language removal makes my work that much more difficult. Employers and landlords sometimes do criminal background checks and sometimes things just “Pop up”. The other reality is the fact that shelters cannot hold all of these women and are only temporary. Agencies and pro-bono lawyers have already taken to social media and have set up online letters decrying this change. You have to fight human trafficking on all fronts not just the ones you feel comfortable supporting.
W.A.R. is a blog that is part of BeaSister2aSister.org a 501(c)3 non profit that has a sustainable program for survivors of human trafficking, domestic violence, exploitation & abuse globally. We are dedicated to helping survivors become independent & not interdependent.
If you would like to know more or give to help us put survivors on a path of self sustainability please visit: http://www,beasister2asister.org to donate click on give today and follow the PayPal link. Thank you for supporting us!