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Evaluating Services for Young Victims of Human Trafficking

NCJ Number
250309
Date Published
Author(s)
National Institute of Justice
Annotation
This article presents information from an NIJ funded study that evaluated three programs funded by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) that are designed to identify and provide services to victims of sex and labor trafficking who are U.S citizens and lawful permanent residents under the age of 18.
Abstract
The three U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime funded programs examined during the study were: 1) the Standing Against Global Exploitation Everywhere (SAGE) Project, located in San Francisco and serving adults and youth affected by sexual exploitation through life skills programs, advocacy, counseling and case management for girls, including those in the juvenile justices system; 2) the Salvation Army Trafficking Outreach Program and Intervention Techniques (STOP-IT) program, located in Chicago and serving foreign trafficking victims and domestic youth engaged in the sex trade; and 3) the Streetwork Project at Safe Horizon, located in New York City and serving homeless and street-involved youth with drop-in centers, a residential program, counseling, health care, legal advocacy and other services. These programs identify and provide services to victims of sex and labor trafficking who are U.S citizens and lawful permanent residents under the age of 18. The goals of the evaluation were to: 1) document program implementation in the three programs; 2) identify promising practices for service delivery programs; and 3) inform delivery of current and future efforts to serve this population. The evaluation also described young people served by the programs and their service needs, services delivered by the programs, the experiences of young people and staff with the programs, and programs’ efforts to strengthen community response to trafficked youth. Investigators uncovered five main findings: there is a wide diversity of trafficked minors; programs demonstrated mixed results in reaching all victims; there are challenges in engaging survivors; there are no quick fixes, conditions that pushed and pulled young people into trafficking were frequently lifelong and sometimes generational; and programs as critical sources of expertise and assistance in overcoming trauma and increasing resiliency in survivors, and provide valuable technical assistance to organizations and case management services.
Date Created: October 23, 2016