This semester I have the great opportunity to work on a project for Shared Hope International. The primary goal of this project is to research alternative court processes for sex trafficking victims as compared to the traditional juvenile justice procedures, such as the delinquency and dependency processes.
This project is very challenging and rewarding because it shows me how states vary in their ability to help and treat child victims of trafficking and abuse. It is also teaching me much about state juvenile processes and how each state defines and processes children. For example, some states have alternative processes that recognize child victims and are able to provide services catered to their needs in this process, while other states may recognize child victims but do not provide services catered to their needs.
This project has taught me that although much has been done to aid the victims of human trafficking, more is still needed. Although some states recognize and provide services to victims of human trafficking in their alternative processes, other states are missing the opportunity to aid these victims.