Lisa worked hard in college and hoped she was well on her way to getting a great job that would launch her career. But the call never came.
Lisa knew why. She was young and naive when a man she met forced her to set up a “date” for commercial sex. The date turned out to be a sting operation and Lisa was arrested and convicted of prostitution. Her criminal record meant that most employers wouldn’t give her a chance.
Lisa is not alone. A recent survey by the National Survivors Network found that the vast majority of human trafficking survivors have criminal records as a result of their ordeals. And most of them report that those records have profoundly affected their lives, making it hard to rent a safe apartment, or get a good job. Some parents report not being able to attend their kids’ soccer games because they are technically convicted sex offenders.
The importance of getting a criminal record cleared for trafficking survivors cannot be overstated. Read our new report to truly understand the need for states to have a clear path for trafficking survivors to clear criminal records.