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Personal Letter - Human Trafficking

             My name is __________ _________, and I am a survivor of sex trafficking. I started down this path as an exotic dancer in California & later Las Vegas. From that point on, I began to make money as an escort on the internet and the Las Vegas strip. As my life started taking a turn for the worse, I ended up walking the street corners in order to make a living for what I thought was for myself, but in reality was for my pimp. I have experienced the mental, emotional, & physical trauma that the sex industry has to offer. In 2012 a near death experience changed my life for the better. I was able to escape and begin my recovery. I later on formed my own organization called Alabaster Outreach here in Portland Oregon. It's mission is to bring awareness to the community about sex trafficking and offer resources to victims and survivors. I must say that during my time as a forced sex worker, I was always treated as a criminal instead of a victim, and still faced such hardships afterward. When applying for jobs my record of prostitution has lead to many dead ends. This is the reason behind my letter. I decided to bring this topic to your attention because according to your own website you have stated that this subject is top priority for you.
             When you hear the words sex trafficking, a third world country probably comes to your mind. You might picture the movie "Taken" and think of a girl being kidnapped abroad. You think of seedy brothels somewhere overseas. I also know what you don't think. You don't think it would be any young lady you know involved in this industry. However, the reality is the picture of sex trafficking is also an average American teenage girl being picked up from school by her "boyfriend." Another sad reality is that our nieces, sisters, or daughters could easily become the next victim. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, "Human trafficking is the control and exploitation of people for profit.

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