This is the executive summary of two reports related to the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) in New York City, one involving an ethnographic description of the city's CSEC population, and another that presents the methodology and findings of an evaluation of a demonstration project that addressed services to the city's CSEC population.
The ethnographic description of the city's CSEC population estimated there are currently 3,946 CSEC victims citywide; however, a caveat regarding research limitations notes this to be an underestimate. Data on demographics address gender and age, race/ethnicity, birth place, and living situation. Data are also provided on interaction with peers, interaction with customers, interaction with "market facilitators" ("pimps"), service participation and needs, contacts with law enforcement, and youths' reflections on life as a prostitute. Data are also provided on New York City's criminal justice response to CSEC over a period of 25 years (1982-2006). This covers arrest trends, prosecution, youth characteristics for child prostitution, as well as arrest trends, prosecution, and defendant characteristics for exploitation and solicitation. This study involved a representative sample of CSEC youth (n=329) recruited through a method called "respondent driven sampling," which has previously been effective in recruiting representative samples of hard-to-reach groups by using intra-group social connections. The second report focuses on the evaluation of a demonstration project known as the Coalition to Address the Sexual Exploitation of Children (CASEC). The evaluation shows that the project increased communication and collaboration among CSEC stakeholders; dedicated resources to prosecute CSEC exploiters; provided housing, counseling, and other services for CSEC youth; and offered preventive education programs that targeted at-risk youth in group homes and schools. The evaluation conducted qualitative interviews within the first 6 months of the evaluation and again 1 year later with representatives from just over 20 stakeholder agencies. 9 references
Date Published: September 1, 2008