AG launches website for human trafficking victims

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Attorney General Bob Ferguson has announced that his office is launching a new online resource to connect human trafficking survivors with resources and support.

For the first time, Ferguson’s new Washington Trafficking Help website, located at watraffickinghelp.org, provides a centralized hub for services available to human trafficking victims ready and able to break free of their trafficker and rebuild their lives.

Disruption of the online sex trade market caused by a recent federal indictment and shut down of Backpage.com, a leading online site for sex trafficking, as well as other online platforms in the last several months has created a potential influx of trafficking survivors who need to be connected with resources.

Ferguson’s site collects many of those resources for both sex and labor trafficking survivors in one place. The site provides a one-stop, comprehensive list of services for victims seeking exit services, survivor support, short-term and long-term shelter, health, mental health, substance abuse, education and employment services, law enforcement contacts and more.

The Attorney General’s Office funds and maintains watraffickinghelp.org. Because labor and sex trafficking victims are often immigrants, Ferguson’s office provides the website in more than 100 languages.

“To break the cycle of trafficking, survivors need to be able to find the help and support they need,” Ferguson said. “It can be overwhelming for trafficking survivors to find those resources. This site makes them accessible in one place.”

The Attorney General’s Office created the site with assistance from the Center for Children & Youth Justice, Washington Advisory Committee on Trafficking (WashACT), King County Commercially Sexually Exploited Children Task Force and King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, with the partnership of human trafficking survivors. It also features downloadable resources, information and a calendar of anti-trafficking events.

“Before this site, it was laborious to identify service providers that have been trained in commercial sexual exploitation that provide services in Washington to survivors,” said Kyra Doubek, co-founder of the Survivor Impact Group sponsored by StolenYouth, and a trafficking survivor who helped develop the website. “This site will enable us to spend more time providing quality services and referrals and less time searching.”

According to the National Human Trafficking Hotline, the number of human trafficking cases reported in Washington doubled between 2012 and 2017. The hotline has taken nearly 3,500 calls from the State of Washington since 2007, identifying nearly 1,800 potential victims of human trafficking in the state.

If you suspect a case of human trafficking, either sex or labor, call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888. If someone is in immediate danger, call 911.

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