Past Events

An Introduction to Issues of Sexual Exploitation and How the Social Service Community Can Help

Wednesday, March 2, 2011
10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Brown Hall, Brown Lounge
2.5 CEUs available
A variety of common life experiences often precede an individual ending up in prostitution.  These include childhood sexual abuse, running away from home, drug addiction, and being unstably housed.  Once in the sex trade, life generally becomes filled with violence, sexual harm and psychological trauma.  This workshop introduces participants to issues of sexual exploitation, including experiences that lead to entering the sex trade, realities once in the trade, barriers to exit, and what the social service community can do to help.

Rachel Durchslag, MA
Executive Director
Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation

Trading Sex in the City - Perspectives and Solutions

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011
5 p.m.- 7 p.m.
Whitaker Hall for Biomedical Engineering,
Room 100, Danforth campus
This panel will discuss the issue of sex trading in our City in terms of the magnitude of sex trading, the health risks and danger to women and the responsibility men have in the trade. Local data will be presented, along with the City’s response. Our New York colleagues will broaden the discussion with their national perspective. [more]


Nicholas Kristof - Half the Sky: From Oppression to Opportunity for Women Worldwide

Monday, October 4, 2010
4:00 p.m.
Washington University Graham Chapel

World Cup 2010: Human Trafficking and Forced Prostitution

John Barr, Reporter, ESPN Outside the Lines
Date: Monday, September 20, 2010
Time:  5:00 PM 
Location: Washington University School of Law

For more information about the program, contact Linda B. Cottler, PhD, MPH, Professor of Epidemiology, Director, Epidemiology and Prevention Research Group, Department of Psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, or Karen Tokarz, Charles Nagel Professor of Public Interest Law and Public Service, Professor of African and African American Studies, Director, Negotiation & Dispute Resolution Program, Washington University School of Law, tokarz@wulaw.wustl.edumore...


Human Trafficking Investigations Training 

Date: Thursday, June 17, 2010
Time: 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Location: Doubletree Hotel, 2431 N. Glenstone, Springfield, MO 65803
Cost: $15 (fee includes the cost of lunch)

This program, hosted by Legal Services of Southern Missouri, is offered to educate and increase awareness about the problem of human trafficking. Human trafficking involves the buying, selling and smuggling of people-often women and children-and forcing them into what amounts to modern day slavery. Victims are most often lured away from their families and their home countries by a promise of a better life and then coerced to work as domestic servants, manual laborers or sex workers. According to the U.S. State Department, up to 2 million people are trafficked around the world each year, with an estimated 15,000 to 18,000 victims trafficked into and within the United States.  The training is sufficient for 4 hours of POST credit, and NASW credit is pending.  Those working as attorneys, prosecutors, law enforcement officials, victim advocates, counselors, nurses and in any other helping profession are encouraged to attend.  Training attendees can take advantage of a group room rate of $119 per night. The hotel conference rooms and parking are located on the west side of the hotel.  For more information or to register, contact Sharon Alexander at 417-881-1397 ext. 1327 or


Human Trafficking and Modern-Day Slavery: Practical Tools for an Effective Response

Date: Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Location: George Warren Brown School of Social Work (Brown Hall Lounge)

Freedom Network Training Institute will present Human Trafficking and Modern-Day Slavery: Practical Tools for an Effective Response at George Warren Brown School of Social Work (Brown Hall Lounge). This training, which is part of the on-going, university-wide, anti-trafficking initiative, is free of charge. For more information, contact Betul A. Ozmat, Assistant Dean for Strategic Initiatives, Brown School at


Gloria Steinem - Sex Trafficking and the New Abolitionists

Gloria Steinem, journalist, author, and political activist, spoke at Washington University on Sex Trafficking and the New Abolitionists on Monday, April 12, 2010 in Graham Chapel. Steinem is the co-founder and editor, Ms. Magazine and New York Magazine; co-founder, National Women’s Political Caucus, Women’s Action Alliance, Coalition of Labor Union Women, Choice USA, and Women’s Media Center; author, Revolution from Within: A Book of Self-Esteem; Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions, Moving Beyond Words; and The Reader's Companion to U.S. Women's History; and member, Board of Directors, Equality Now, which documents violence and discrimination against women, and mobilizes international action to stop human rights abuses. This talk was co-sponsored with the Assembly Series, George Warren Brown School of Social Work, School of Law Public Interest Law & Policy Speaker Series, and Association of Women Faculty, as part of the on-going, university-wide, anti-trafficking initiative. The afternoon Q&A session with Ms. Steinem, held in the Bryan Cave Courtroom, can be accessed on the law school website (click here).


Labor and Migration Effects on Human Trafficking Panel

The Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Work and Social Capital’s Speaker Series and the Law & Culture Initiative included a panel on April 7, 2010, that discussed Labor and Migration Effects of Human Trafficking. The panel is part of a campus-wide initiative on human trafficking.

Human Trafficking is a crime against humanity. It involves the act of recruiting, transporting, transferring, harboring, or receiving a person through the use of force, coercion, abduction, fraud, or other means, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation includes prostitution, other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude, and much worse. Every year, thousands of men, women, and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and in the United States.

We learned through this panel discussion that human trafficking occurs everywhere in the world and takes many forms:

  • Occurs both across borders and within a country (not just cross-border)
  • Is for a range of exploitative purposes (not just sexual exploitation)
  • Victimizes children, women and men
  • Victims often think they are coming to the U.S. to work in legitimate jobs and then are forced into illegal human trafficking situations
  • Takes place with or without the involvement of organized crime groups 
  • Is a very complicated issue when it comes to rescuing and/or defending victims of human trafficking

For more information on the event, and to view a video recording of the panel, click here


Kamala Kempadoo - The Politics of the War on Sex Trafficking: A View from the South

"Sex Trafficking" is claimed by the US State Department, the UN, and the IOM to be a problem in most countries in the global South, including many in the Caribbean region. Yet there is much confusion at the local government and public levels about how this claim is arrived at, even while various initiatives are being taken to address the problem. Professor Kempadoo will address the issue of sex trafficking in the Caribbean today, examining it in the contexts of the local sex trade and the global politics of the war on human trafficking.  Global and Transnational Feminisms Lecture Series.

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