On Friday, hundreds of people are expected at the Liberty Station Conference Center with a mission to stop human trafficking.
The event, Ending Human Trafficking in San Diego: A Collaborative Summit, is sponsored by Rotary International and hosted by Point Loma Nazarene University and San Diego County.
Teenagers manipulated behind bars, the search for a father for his stolen daughter and a survivor’s side of the story. What is child sex trafficking and why should you care?
Nathan Earl, who is the event‘s keynote speaker, has traveled the country for two decades speaking to the public, law enforcement and government leaders about the exploitation of boys and men. He told NBC7 that the passion behind his anti-trafficking mission is personal.
“I had negative experiences as a little boy that later led to exploitation and trafficking,” Earl said. “I know firsthand the resilience of the human spirit and the possibilities when survivors are connected to the trauma-informed community and given hope.”
Earl said when people first think of victims and survivors of sex trafficking, they often think of girls and women, but he said boys make up a significant percentage of trafficked people. Earl said another common misconception is that boys who are exploited identify as LGBTQ or gay. He said that in fact, less than half of boys who report being trafficked or sexually exploited identify as gay.
There are several factors that could make boys more vulnerable to exploitation, Earl said, including things like coming from a toxic home, substance abuse, housing insecurity, unresolved mental health issues and life experiences. childhood negatives.
Earl hopes that after hearing his presentation, people will recognize that trafficking is a global pandemic of violence and that every trafficked and exploited child deserves access to resources and services to overcome the situation.
Friday’s summit is free to the public and will feature dozens of government, business and non-profit organizations presenting ideas on how the community can be part of the solution to end human trafficking. human being.
The event will also include a panel discussion with anti-trafficking experts, moderated by NBC7 San Diego anchor Monica Dean. Click here to join.
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NBC 7 has spent more than a year investigating sex trafficking and child exploitation in San Diego and beyond. For more on the issue, stream the series here or on the Peacock app.