Many Washington teens are missing, vulnerable to sex trafficking

KIRO7 News, updated June 5, 2018

As reported by KIRO7 News, "For weeks, media outlets reported on a Bonney Lake teenager who disappeared on May 9 and is safe tonight. But many more teens are still missing, including three girls whose cases did not receive the same level of attention. All three disappeared around the same time, late April and early May. And they are still missing."

"Seattle police say on any day, they have 50 to 60 active missing persons cases; about half involve children.  According to the advocacy group REST or Real Escape from the Sex Trade, one in three runaways is recruited by a pimp within 48 hours of leaving home. The average age of these runaways? Just 15 years old."


And most often, says (Kyra) Doubek, they are found by predators trolling the internet even before they leave home.  "They look for these people posting sad posts," she says. "It's not that they're bad kids. As my colleague says they're sad kids, they're not bad kids."

Sixteen-year-old Shianna Victoria Elkins ran away from Mount Vernon on April 19. Elkins is described as a ''chronic runaway.'' Seven days later, Ximena Delgado ran away from her Spokane home. Police believe the 16-year-old is with her boyfriend. Seventeen-year-old Hannah Turkington from Vancouver, Washington, ran away two days after the Bonney Lake teen. Police describe her, too, as a "chronic runaway."


What does that mean for you and I?  What can we do?  Being involved in the lives of kids and caring about them -- as coaches, youth group volunteers, scout or 4-H leaders, etc. -- can make a huge difference.  Being the home on the block where neighborhood kids are welcome and adults listen can provide a lifeline when life gets tough.  

And sometimes young people need you to be their lifeline.
SAH

Want to learn more about the face of modern-day slavery? Visit www.hope4justice.org/learnmore/ 


JOIN US
The next public meeting of Hope4Justice will be in the fall of 2018.  The specific date and information about meeting content will be included in this weekly email as far in advance as possible.

ON THE READING LIST

Renting Lacy: A Story of America’s Prostituted Children (A Call to Action) by Linda Smith

The inspiration for the USA – Motel room in SOLD, this book reveals the underbelly of our country’s commercial sex trade. Get to know the men who sell them, and the ones who buy them. Let Renting Lacy draw you into the lives of these young girls as they struggle to survive each night, watching their childhood hopes and dreams slip away in the darkness. Let it compel you to action.

(Information from Mirror Ministries website.)

Our Children And Porn

A major concern of parents is exposure of their children to online pornography.  That concern is well founded.  According to pornharmsresearch.com, "The average age that children are exposed to pornography is eleven."  And viewing pornography definitely has negative effects on children.  Pornharmsresearch.com gives the following points about children viewing pornography:

  • "Pornography gives children unrealistic ideas about sex (often that violence is appropriate and women are to be subjugated) and the opposite gender, affecting their ability to develop healthy relationships.  It becomes difficult to form intimate relationships beyond sexual arousal and pleasure.
  • With over 90% of youth ages 12-18 using the Internet, the media has arguably become the leading sex educator in the U.S. today instead of parents and school education programs.
  • Children exposed to pornography tend to engage in sexual acts at younger ages, resulting in increased STDs, unwanted pregnancy and many other emotional consequences.
  • 90% of 8-16 year olds have viewed porn online, most admit that it is while doing homework."

What can parents do?  Checking out and purchasing parental control software is one step, however that only puts filters on personal devices.  A June 7, 2018 email from The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) explains how they are working on a broader front: "The National Center on Sexual Exploitation has been making progress with corporate policy advocacy because we contend that no organization or corporation should profit from, or contribute to, sexual exploitation.  

During June 2018, NCOSE staff, "...are meeting separately with executives at Google and with executives at Comcast! Both companies are starting to make improvements to filtering systems that will allow families and individuals to avoid pornography. We are meeting to thank them for these efforts, and to give them suggestions for the most important improvements."

Steps toward measures of control over the porn that is so easily accessible via modern technology is vital to the well-being of our children.  We applaud the work of NCOSE!  (Learn more about their efforts at www.endsexualexploitation.org.)
SAH

Want to learn more about the face of modern-day slavery? Visit http://www.hope4justice.org/the-facts/

LEARN MORE
So what's the connection between porn and trafficking? 
A 6/8/18 Facebook post by Pornography Harms explains it this way, 'When people say they don't care about the problem of pornography, but they're concerned about sex trafficking or sexual violence, I want to ask them 'What industry do you think is normalizing these crimes and giving some men the idea that they're entitled to women's bodies any time they want?'  The connection is crystal clear.  #Pornography creates and drives the demand for trafficked women, children, and men. #pornharms #endexploitation"

Learn more at https://endsexualexploitation.org/

JOIN US
The next public meeting of Hope4Justice will be in the fall of 2018.  The specific date and information about meeting content will be included in this weekly email as far in advance as possible.

ON THE READING LIST

The Good News About Injustice: A Witness of Courage in a Hurting World by Gary Haugen

For those struggling to make sense of the pain and injustice in this world from a Christian point of view. This book offers a biblical perspective on justice and answers the question: how can we as Christians bring hope to these individuals?

Every Man’s Battle: Winning the War on Sexual Temptation One Victory at a Time by Fred Stoeker and Stephen Arterburn

For men who want to conquer sexual temptation and become Defenders. Many have found Every Man’s Battle the single greatest resource for overcoming the struggle and remaining strong in the face of temptation.

(Information from Mirror Ministries website.)
 

Nine mobile apps parents -- and others -- should know about Developed by the Sarasota County (FL) Sheriff's Office

A May 29, 2018 Facebook post by the Sarasota Florida Sheriff's Office shows a graphic of nine mobile apps that all of us should be aware of.  The post says, "In response to #OperationIntercept SCSO which led to the arrest of 21 men engaging in illicit, criminal behavior with children online, we developed this graphic to inform parents of nine mobile applications they should know about. By SHARING this graphic, you too, can help protect our next generation."

Operation Intercept, an initiative to protect Sarasota County children from online predators, resulted in the arrest of twenty one suspects ranging from ages 22-58 that "... responded to Internet-based ads, online apps or social media sites and engaged in sexually explicit written and verbal conversations."

The graphic gives brief descriptions of the following apps: Bumble, Liveme, Ask.fm, Snapchat, Holla, Calculator%, Kik, Whisper, and Hot or Not.  Parents are urged to learn about the apps and be aware of the potential risks associated with each one.  Concerns range from Ask.me being known for cyber bullying to Whisper promoting sharing of secrets with strangers to Kik allowing anyone anywhere to contact and direct message your child.  Learn about all nine apps HERE

The potential for harm to our children is huge.  Please share this information and help protect our kids from cyber abuse, luring into trafficking, bullying and more.
SAH

Want to learn more about the face of modern-day slavery? Visit http://www.hope4justice.org/the-facts


THANK YOU TO KENNADY!

Kennady, a new Hope4Justice volunteer recently stepped up to take on the task of sending a weekly prayer letter to those interested in regular prayer for Engedi Refuge Ministries.  We are so glad for her willingness to help in this way!  

If you'd like to subscribe to the Engedi Prayer Group letter, contact us atinfo@hope4justice.org.

JOIN US
The next public meeting of Hope4Justice will be in the fall of 2018.  The specific date and information about meeting content will be included in this weekly email as far in advance as possible.


ON THE READING LIST

Deepening the Soul for Justice by Bethany Hoang

The challenges of global injustice can be overwhelming. The pain is real; the violence dark. Many well-intentioned Christians get burned out. What can you do to stay in the game? Bethany Hoang, director of International Justice Mission’s IJM Institute, has seen firsthand how spiritual formation can fuel our response to God’s call to justice–from the inside out. Hoang shares spiritual practices honed on the frontlines of the fight for justice–guideposts for an inward journey that can propel a disciple outward, empowering the difficult work of justice. Seeking the God of justice can be a catalyst for spiritual growth and deeper personal discipleship. Discover spiritual disciplines for the justice-seeker and renew and invigorate your own justice journey. Includes questions for group discussion.

(Information from Mirror Ministries website.)