The Role of Community Members
If you are a student, parent, city council or city board member, church or faith community, business owner, or other individual passionate about preventing and ending sex trafficking and sexual exploitation, you have an important role to play. But if you’re not conducting investigations, providing services to victims, or leading a protocol team, what is that role?
Here are some places to start:
- Learn from survivors. A great place to start is Voices of Safe Harbor: Survivor & Youth Input for Minnesota’s Model Protocol on Sexual Exploitation and Sex Trafficking of Youth. You can also click on the quote bubbles above for more information and resources.
- Influence leadership and help shape policy. Put pressure on your elected officials – including your county attorney, school district, and local law enforcement agencies to start prioritizing this as an issue. Get involved in policy initiatives that support victims of all forms of sexual violence.
- Increase public awareness about what is actually happening at the local level. Consult with local advocacy programs and other professionals who work directly with sexually exploited youth to learn more about the way sex trafficking and sexual exploitation are actually happening locally, discontinue the use of images that perpetuate myths or stereotypes, call attention to the demand within the community.
- Promote programs that will help prevent sex trafficking and sexual exploitation. Develop programming for men and boys and encourage school and church leaders to start teaching youth about healthy relationships.
- Help your community become a safe place for all youth. Speak up when you observe attitudes and behaviors that objectify women and girls or perpetuate racism, sexism, and homophobia, support programs that help build a culture of gender equity and respect.
Coming soon! Check back on this page to learn more about what community members and community organizations across the state are doing to help victims.