“What you always do before you make a decision is consult. The best public policy is made when you are listening to people who are going to be impacted. Then, once a policy is determined, you call on them to help you sell it.”
— Elizabeth Dole

"I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim January 2023 as National Human Trafficking Prevention Month.  I call upon businesses, civil society organizations, communities of faith, families, and all Americans to recognize the vital role we play in combating human trafficking and to observe this month with appropriate programs and activities aimed at preventing all forms of human trafficking." Joe Biden, President of the United States of America (January 2023)

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The Real Face of Child Trafficking in the United States:
Understanding how all states are impacted by trafficking and coercion tactics

Date of Event: Wednesday, July 17th 2024

Time of Event: 9:30 AM — 1:00 PM PST

Place of Event: Webinar

Key Speakers

U.S. Congressman Burgess Owens, Representative 4th District Utah, Author of Preventing Child Trafficking Act 2024
Selina Higgins, Executive Director, New York City Administration for Children’s Services’ Office of Child Trafficking Prevention and Policy
Dr. Lois Lee, Founder, Children of the Night
Dr. Doug Bennett, Founder/President/CEO, Magdalene Hope, INC.
Phil Brewer, Specialist Advisor on Modern Slavery, Human Trafficking Foundation
Kimberly Mehlman-Orozco, Executive Director, Freedom Light
Marianne Jackson, Survivor of human trafficking; Facility Director of Restoration Ranch Women’s Shelter


All 50 states in the nation have reported cases of human trafficking, as UNICEF USA details. Trafficking does not just affect people of a certain race, socioeconomic status, education, or even gender. While certain populations are more vulnerable to trafficking, it is a phenomenon that affects anyone. According to Saved in America, an estimated 50,000 people in the country are victims of human trafficking, including sex trafficking. “There are more than 365,000 missing children in our country each year. 30% of those missing are being trafficked (approximately 109,000 children). An average of 3,000-8,000 children trafficked each year are in San Diego County.” (Saved in America) To add to these statistics, about 60% of trafficked youth are in the foster care system, with California, Texas and Florida reporting the most human trafficking cases in the United States, followed by Las Vegas as a city hotspot. The Polaris Project, an anti-human trafficking organization working to debunk myths around this topic, state that “perpetrators of human trafficking span all racial, ethnic, and gender demographics and are as diverse as survivors. Some use their privilege, wealth, and power as a means of control while others experience the same socio-economic oppression as their victims. They include individuals, business owners, members of a gang or network, parents or family members of victims, intimate partners, owners of farms or restaurants, and powerful corporate executives and government representatives.” (The Polaris Project) This means that traffickers are hard to pick out in a crowd and could be closely related to the victim even. Additionally, “human trafficking is often confused with human smuggling, which involves illegal border crossings. In fact, the crime of human trafficking does not require any movement whatsoever. Survivors can be recruited and trafficked in their own home towns, even their own homes.” (The Polaris Project) While accurate statistics are hard to obtain due to the amount of cases that go unresolved or unreported, in 2021 the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline reported 10,359 cases of human trafficking, which involved 16,554 individual victims. (U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline)

This is an important issue to tackle because child trafficking can affect any community, making certain populations and neighborhoods vulnerable to this phenomenon and perpetuating unsafe societies. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 is a federal legislation that was released in 2000 which would “equip the U.S. Government with new tools and resources to mount a comprehensive and coordinated campaign to eliminate modern forms of slavery domestically and internationally.” (The U.S. Department of Justice) Individual states are also making progress in preventing trafficking of children and helping victims, such as California’s policy SB 14, which is a “bipartisan measure co-authored by 64 members of the Legislature. The legislation is supported by over a hundred local, national and international organizations, including a coalition of human trafficking survivors and advocates.” (California Governor) Additionally, the “Prevention of and Remedies for Human Trafficking, drafted by the National Conference of Commissions on Uniform State Laws, provides a comprehensive model law against human trafficking to help ensure effective action by the fifty states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The model law was approved by the American Bar Association House of Delegates at the annual meeting in 2013.” (American Bar Association)

Neal Davis Law Firm says that “The issue of human trafficking has received more widespread media attention and public concern in recent years, particularly in light of high profile individuals who have been charged with child sex trafficking and human exploitation—such as Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell, ex-USA Gymnastics coach John Geddert, as well as Canadian clothing designer Peter Nygard.” (Neal Davis Law Firm) As trafficking continues to be brought into the light, there are many gaps that still need to be addressed. Policy does not always ensure that those committing the crime will stay imprisoned. In New York, sex trafficking and sex trafficking of a child are considered Class B Felonies, meaning that the perpetrator can not be punished for more than 20 years. In other states, ruling declares life felon for sex trafficking of children. Furthermore, many victims are unprotected by policy, keeping them in the shadows as they don't feel safe enough to report their abuse. This symposium seeks to discuss the statistics of child trafficking cases throughout the past years, and how COVID-19 and post-pandemic time have affected these numbers. This event will discuss ways that legislation is moving forward in helping victims feel comfortable to speak up about their cases, while also looking towards how policy can better prevent this phenomenon from occurring.


  • Assess the statistics of recent trends and patterns in child and human trafficking across the United States.
  • Evaluate who is at risk of trafficking, why children are trafficked and what happens to them once a perpetrator gains access to them.
  • Analyze the frequency of children sex trafficking within the United States context and the emotional/mental impact this has on their development.
  • Discuss how the COVID-19 pandemic altered the rate of child and sex trafficking, increasing or decreasing the frequency of this phenomenon.
  • Analyze the role that US policy plays in not only rescuing victims but searching for traffickers and condemning their actions.
  • Evaluate the role that technology, the internet, and businesses play in the transfer of data and information in human trafficking.
  • Evaluate the part that organizations and NGO’s play in helping victims recover emotionally and physically once they are rescued from these said conditions.
  • Discuss how communities, especially those at greater risk, can protect their society and offer support to prevent child and sex trafficking from taking place.

Who Should Attend?

  • Anti-Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery Teams
  • Border Force
  • Immigration and US Visa Teams
  • Vulnerable Persons Coordinators
  • Missing Persons Units
  • HARP Organization and HALO Group
  • Rape and Sexual Assault Support Centers and Specialists
  • Social Workers and Social Services Officers
  • Housing Officers
  • Police Service
  • Serious and Organized Crime Units
  • Port and Airport Authorities
  • Safeguarding Adults Teams
  • Health Service Professionals
  • Sexual Health Practitioners
  • Probation Officers
  • Compliance Officers
  • Mental Health Practitioners
  • Local Safeguarding Children Boards
  • Child Protection and Looked-After Children Teams
  • Victim Support Representatives
  • Community Cohesion and Development Organizations
  • Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships
  • Local Criminal Justice Boards
  • Community Safety Teams
  • Neighborhood Policing Teams
  • Sheltered Housing Associations
  • Criminal Justice Practitioners
  • Judges and Magistrates
  • Legal Professionals
  • Local Authority Officers and Councilors
  • Equality and Diversity Practitioners
  • Third Sector Practitioners
  • Academics and Researchers
  • Children psychologists and therapists

Sponsorship and Exhibition Opportunities

If you’re interested in promoting your company, products and/or services at our events, please click here to enter your details and we will contact you directly. Alternatively, please call
+1 (310) 385 8750 for more information.

How to Book

+1 (310) 385 8750