WASHINGTON -- Shared Hope International will release a groundbreaking report on child sex trafficking in the United States at the Congressional Human Trafficking Briefing on Capitol Hill hosted by the Human Trafficking Caucus and Victims' Rights Caucus led by Congressman Poe (TX) and Congressman Smith (NJ), long-time advocates for victims protections. Former Congresswoman Linda Smith (1994-98), Founder of Shared Hope International, will open a panel discussion on the findings of more than four years of research in America. Shared Hope International's National Report on Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking, America's Prostituted Children highlights the harsh reality that hundreds of thousands of American children are victimized through sex trafficking in the United States driven by the demand for the commercial sex acts they perform. A child sex trafficking victim who is purchased for sex by 5 different men per night, 5 nights per week for an average of 5 years would have been raped by 6,000 buyers during her victimization through prostitution. Many of these child rapists are never charged or prosecuted while the young victims' lives are destroyed.
"The horror is that our children are victimized twice -- first by the prostitution and then by the broken system that treats them like criminals while the buyers are given a slap on the wrist, if anything at all. What kind of message is this sending?" asked Founder and President of Shared Hope International, Linda Smith.
Ambassador Louis C. de Baca of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons at the U.S. Department of State will present findings from the 2009 TIP Report and panelists from the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division and Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section of the Criminal Division will discuss domestic child sex trafficking, followed by an NGO panel led by Congresswoman Linda Smith and highlighting Ernie Allen, President and CEO of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.
"From our investigative research gathered from 11 cities across the nation, we've found so many victims of domestic minor sex trafficking that are misidentified, and labeled as prostitutes. They are sold every day, every night in every city in America," said Smith. Watch human rights surveillance video instantly here: www.sharedhope.org/what/dmst.asp.