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Exploiting Exploitation: How Improper Use of the Trafficking Narrative Can Endanger Survivors and Increase Trafficking Risk

November 16, 2023 @ 12:00 pm 1:30 pm

Despite having a legal definition that is over two decades old, startling misperceptions about human trafficking persist. Popular television and media, governmental bodies, and even anti-trafficking organizations themselves commonly traffic in misinformation that perpetuates racialized, gendered, and class-based myths about who is being victimized as well as who is doing the victimizing. As a result, trafficking, particularly the exploitation of children, has become the perfect vehicle for politicians and other groups to capitalize on in an effort to further their own political agendas, and to obscure far less palatable objectives. Nowhere has this exploitation been starker than in the national discourse around immigration, abortion, and the rights of transgender people.

Please join the Human Trafficking Prevention Project on Thursday, November 16th as we discuss how exploitation of the trafficking narrative can actually endanger survivors, as well as put already marginalized populations at increased risk of human trafficking. Joining the HTPP in this important discussion will be C.P. Hoffman, Esq. (she/they), gender and sexuality policy advocate, Melanie Shapiro Esq., (she/her), Policy Director with the Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence and former juvenile public defender, and Agatha Schmaedick, Esq. (she/her), a Staff Attorney working at the intersection of immigrant and worker’s rights at the Human Trafficking Legal Center.