Posts tagged 20:4:00
"Not #MeToo": How Gender-based Work and Micro/Macro-aggressions Impede Trafficking Survivors of Color from Accessing Services

Even within the field of sexual violence intervention, there appears to be a hierarchy not only in who “deserves” victim-status, but even in the way our systems choose to intervene with marginalized populations. Often, those providing services within the sexual violence field face the same microaggressions that impact those whom they want to serve. This presentation will examine the systemic challenges faced by Women of Color (WOC) serving Trafficking Survivors of Color (TSOC), the barriers identified by TSOC in accessing culturally-relevant services, and ways in which various agencies have enhanced their services by implementing culturally-relevant practices.

Presentation Objectives:

·  Define microaggressions and provide examples of how they are displayed with sexual violence work.

·  Identify challenges faced by WOC providing services to TSOC.

·  Describe barriers to accessing culturally-relevant services.

·  Provide examples of culturally-relevant practices being utilized throughout the country with TSOC and other Survivors of Color.

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Reclaiming Feminine Power

The process in which religions use powerful sex drives to infect society with ideas that benefit the ideologies and influence human sex and sexuality continue to influence society today. Historically, Judeo-Christian religion has looked at female sexuality, on its own, as uncouth and something that deserved to be punished both by the church and publicly, achieved by limiting human, and in particular, female pleasure through shame and control. Pro sex feminism, one of two ideologies founded in 1980s feminist movements, makes the case that consensual sex expressions should be protected, no matter the form it takes. Today, feminists struggle with the implied patriarchal imprisonment of porn, sex work and the sexual representation of women in mass marketed media. Women have the choice to work in the sex industry as strippers, porn performers, etc. and their practice is akin to a lineage of healers tapping into taboo female power. Regardless of factors that have lead each individual woman to participate in this industry, sex workers are persecuted by both the patriarchal authorities and by feminist narratives that integrate sex work with sex trafficking. Just as women who defied the sexual status quo were once persecuted as witches, sex workers are persecuted for using their bodies to survive and even thrive in a culture that still has not granted complete bodily autonomy to women (Sollée, 2017).

Presentation Objectives:

·  Deplete the negative stigma of the sex industry.

·  Reframe the narrative around sex work.

·  Analyze the connection between slut shaming and female persecution through the guise of religion.

·  Describe the in-depth factors of what sex work means through the lenses of different races, sexual orientation.

·  Introduce the idea of touch therapy, cuddle therapy, etc. in reference to sex work.

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Correlates of Human Trafficking Risk: Implications for Screening, Referral, and Intervention among Substance Abuse Populations

Clinical professionals are among the most likely to come into contact with those that are currently or have been victims of human trafficking. A response to education and awareness campaigns worldwide has increased efforts to improve screening and referral for trafficking victims among the medical, legal, and social service communities. This presentation will describe a descriptive study aimed at understanding what relationships exist between human trafficking victimization and other social and health indicators. A pilot study with 150 participants completed a screening for human trafficking (sex and/or labor) using an adapted version from the VERA assessment upon intake into substance use treatment. The VERA assessment is a validated tool, funded by the National Institute of Justice, developed by the VERA Institute to accurately identify victims of both sex and labor trafficking. Over one-half screened at-risk for human trafficking without self-identifying as victim. Descriptive analyses reveal that there are significant relationships among social determinants of health, health literacy, HIV risk, adverse early childhood experiences, and human trafficking risk. Structural equation modeling was then conducted to develop a pathway model of trafficking risk among substance abuse clients in treatment. These results informed an implementation study to better screen for human trafficking victimization, make appropriate referrals to services, and implement universal precautions for at risk populations that is currently underway. This session will be aimed at clinicians, health care professionals, and community members who want to better understand what relationships exist among risk factors for trafficking victimization. 

Presentation Objectives:

·  Explain social determinants of health.

·  Describe relationships among risk factors for trafficking.

·  Identify screening and referral strategies.

·  Pinpoint potential moderators of trafficking risk.

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Inadvertent Harm and Re-victimization: Research Based Methods to Ensure that Well-meaning Advocacy Efforts are not Hurting or Hindering the Pro Human Rights Movement

Over the last decade, an increased focus on human rights and social justice issues has inspired students, researchers, and advocates to join the field. Despite the well-meaning efforts of many advocates, it remains unknown whether ethical issues such as maleficence and beneficence are not violated. This engaging presentation will provide evidence-based, peer reviewed methods to better inform the research and treatment practices of helping professionals. This session will provide education on topics including how to avoid spreading false facts, how to avoid mindless consumerism within advocacy materials and fundraising items via the buycott app and how to use trauma-sensitive language as developed by the International Organizations for Adolescents (2017). Additionally, the presenters will be examining how to avoid emotionally escalating and/or damaged centered pleas to gain exposure for your organizations mission by examining Dr. Robert Cilaini’s research into influence (1984), ethical considerations in dealing with sensitive subjects, and finally how certain fundraising or advocacy efforts may inadvertently re-victimize survivors and abuse victims by relating the work of victimization conducted by Morton & Sangrey (1986) and others. At the end of this presentation, members of advocacy organizations who do not hold licensure for working with traumatic situation will have a better understanding of how to engage in trauma-informed dialogue. This presentation will benefit new students, researchers, and advocates who may be at the beginning of their career or those who have not yet discovered ways to ethically support survivors of trauma.

Presentation Objectives:

·  Describe how to avoid spreading false facts.

·  Explain how to avoid mindless consumerism within advocacy materials and fundraising items.

·  Discuss trauma-sensitive language and ethical considerations in dealing with sensitive subjects.

·  Explore how certain fundraising or advocacy efforts may re-victimize survivors and abuse victims.


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Finding a Voice: From Africa to Europe, the Effect of Voodoo Secrecy Oath Sworn by Victims

Human trafficking, also known as modern day slavery, is a menace that has eaten deep into today’s world. Day by day, victims are being trafficked across borders, seas and deserts from Africa to Europe, by traffickers for exploitation.  These victims could be anyone: a relative, a friend, someone else we know, or there might even come a day might where we find ourselves as the victim…who knows? There is a need for the voices of the victims to be heard, which this presentation aims to provide. One huge factor that has silenced the voice of several victims from Africa is the voodoo secrecy oath usually sworn to by girls in Nigeria and Africa before being trafficked to Europe. The voodoo secrecy oath forbids the victim from ever reporting or giving any information to the police about their traffickers. Voodoo has been used as a powerful tool to enslave women for sexual exploitation (García 2013). Do people really believe in voodoo? Why is voodoo so powerful in West Africa? Is it real or its mere fiction? While most Africans believe in the power of juju/voodoo, others do not and only see it as a tool used by traffickers to scare their victims. With her individual personal experience in the anti-human trafficking struggle, Joy has been

privileged to come in contact with victims who have either taken an oath or had their hair and fingernails cut off by their traffickers for voodoo. Joy gathered data on this topic through conducting interviews with victims who experienced this. This presentation will cover the mechanisms that can be used to help victims find a voice regardless of the oath of secrecy previously sworn to.

Presentation Objectives:

·  Explain the meaning of voodoo in the African context.

·  Analyze the procedure for voodoo secrecy oath taking in Africa.

·  Outline the role of voodoo priests in oath taking and human trafficking.

·  Explore the role of voodoo in silencing the voice of victims.

·  Discuss how to best help voodoo secrecy oath victims find a voice.

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At Risk. At Home: Trafficking of the Familial Child, A Survivor's Perspective

The goal of this presentation is to increase awareness of sex trafficking of the younger child, sometimes called familial or “Homegrown” sex trafficking. The presenter will first identify three different styles of this trafficking: 1) “Kids who pay bills” as in the Shania Davis Case; 2) “Organized Crime Trafficking” as in my own case and with other survivor interviews; and 3) “Loner Entrepreneurs” as in the book, Scared Selfless. She will also talk about the 2014 FBI report that found that 60% of all recovered victims had been in the foster care system. Second, the presenter will to go over signs and differentiate them from "regular" sexual abuse. Obviously, sex trafficking is abuse and many of the signs for younger children are identical. There is little research on this subject, but from interviews with victims, the presenter will point out a few of the telltale signs that might indicate trafficking. She will use her own experiences of being involved in 7 different trafficking groups from ages 5-16 and the grooming that started at age 3. Finally, the presenter will to review some of the investigation and intervention protocols that need to be handled carefully. Damage from early sexual trauma is psychologically profound as in DID. Victims may not remember their abuse, as in traumatic amnesia, or simply be unwilling to break the code of silence because it may be lethal to them. Great care must be taken in investigating these types of cases.

Presentation Objectives:

·  Describe how this kind of trafficking exists and is often overshadowed by the "lured teen" or young adult.

·  Explain the signs of this kind of trafficking so professionals can more readily recognize it.

·  Discuss how any investigation or intervention done with this kind of trafficking needs to be handled differently.

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Posttraumatic Growth and Religious Coping in Participants of CATCH Court, a Problem-Solving Court for Sex Trafficking Victims

It is now well established that women trafficked into the sex industry report higher levels of posttraumatic stress compared to women who are not trafficked (Choi, Klein, Shin, & Lee, 2009; Krumrei-Mancuso, 2017). Still, the attention on negative symptoms stemming from trauma has overshadowed awareness of adaptive coping strategies individuals in these contexts employ, as well as their potential for growth and transformation despite the formidable struggles they have endured (Calhoun & Tedeschi, 2013; Joseph, Murphy, & Regel, 2012). Religious coping following exposure to trauma is one such mechanism deserving attention, given the way unwelcome experiences disrupt personal beliefs and life narratives and cause individuals to grapple with the incomprehensible. Religious coping may provide resources for cognitive appraisals that assist with engaging the ultimate questions trauma raises and provide practices that support their recovery. Participants of this study included 60 individuals enrolled in the Changing Actions to Change Habits (CATCH) Court program, established in 2009 by Judge Paul M. Herbert in the Columbus, Ohio Franklin County Municipal Court for human-trafficking victims and persons arrested for prostitution and/or solicitation (Mueller, 2012). CATCH participants were recruited through invitation by the CATCH Court judge during weekly status review hearings. Results of this study will be discussed including findings related to traumatic events, Posttraumatic Stress (PTS), Posttraumatic Growth (PTG), distressing events, and religious coping. In an otherwise understandable overemphasis on posttraumatic stress, this presentation seeks to encourage survivors and providers alike with some helpful research on posttraumatic growth and religious coping among human trafficking survivors.
Presentation Objectives:

·  Define CATCH Court, a restorative justice response to adult trafficking survivors in the criminal justice system.

·  Explore the research behind PTG and how it relates to survivors of sex trafficking.

·  Discuss both Negative and Positive Religious Coping and their impact on PTG.

·  Identify linkages between exposure to trauma, PTS, religious coping and PTG in a group of individuals exiting sex trafficking.

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