In Virginia, underage sex trafficking is real. That's why the Commonwealth has created new and stronger laws and methods of saving the children being victimized. With these efforts comes the bitter-sweet challenge of the rescue of child and then the recovery.
Girls, and boys, between 12 and 14 are the targets of sex traffickers. It's not a crime isolated to major cities like L.A. In fact, northern Virginia and Richmond are high on lists tallying where child victims are prostituted. Keith Farmer is Director of Straight Street, a Roanoke ministry providing services to children and teens. He says of all their goals, talking about sex trafficking is number one:
Straight Street is working to create programs that will teach teens about the ways--often through social media--predators recruit and what to do if they, or someone they know, is approached or becomes involved.
Farmer says they are working with law enforcement and agencies to create programs to help victims when they have been rescued:
Among Straight Street's services to the victims they are developing is a the purchase of property to create a safe house where the children can be safe, counseled and embark on the paths of recovery.