FVTC holds seminar to combat sex trafficking

April 2, 2014

From wbay.com: “FVTC Holds Seminar to Combat Sex Trafficking” — Grand Chute – On the heels of several local incidents in our area involving solicitation and prostitution, experts say sex trafficking is becoming more prevalent in northeast Wisconsin. Fox Valley Tech, through it’s AMBER Alert Training and Technical Assistance Program, is raising awareness of the issue through a seminar it’s holding this week.

Dozen of law enforcement agents, social workers, and those with non-profits listened as Asia Graves, a survivor of sex trafficking told her story.

“I’ve been beaten, you name it,” says Asia Graves, a victim of sex trafficking. “I’ve had my teeth broken, I’ve been beaten until I miscarried, stabbed in my face and stabbed in my stomach, you name it I’ve experienced it.”

After being sexually abused as child and living with her parents, both addicts, separately for years, Graves turned to prostitution at 15. A life she lived for about three years. It’s those experiences attendees at a seminar, put on by Fox Valley Tech’s AMBER Alert Training and Technical Assistance Program are hoping to avoid in their communities as incidents of sex trafficking or prostitution continue to rise.

Talking about sex trafficking, Lisa Schmid from FVTC says, “It is prevalent and people think it is not happening in our community and it happens in every community both big, small, tribal communities, rural, it’s apparent here as well.”

And that’s why Asia Graves tells her story. Not only is it therapeutic for her, but she also wants to help combat the problem and educate others on how to deal with victims.

Says Graves, “Hoping that they learn how to work with the victim with a better response system, not treating them like throwaways, not treating them as if they don’t exist, not treating them oh she’s a runaway so I’m not even going to bother looking for her.”

It was an eye opening reality for those here who say they want to help.

Eric Swan from the Lac Court Oreilles Tribal Police says, “Statistically it’s probably going on on our reservation and I need to know how to identify those children so I can get to them and help them.”

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