The presentation will describe the pervasiveness of gender based violence in the U.S. and how for marginalized girls and young women, the experience of sexual violence too often leads to criminal justice involvement. The presentation will map key points in the pipeline—the detention of girls who are victims of sex trafficking; the criminalization of girls who run away from home or become truant; and those who cross from the child welfare system into juvenile justice — to create an understanding of the ways that girls, especially girls of color, are unfairly punished after their experiences of sexual and physical abuse. The presentation will also talk about ways to dismantle this unjust pipeline for girls by offering policy recommendations at both the state and federal levels as well as describing a national campaign we have launched to combat one aspect of the pipeline-- the criminalization of child sex trafficking victims for prostitution offenses. Finally, the presentation will address how confronting sex trafficking must be understood as a social, gender, and racial justice issue.
Yasmin Vafa is cofounder and Executive Director of Rights4Girls, a human rights organization working to end gender-based violence and sex trafficking in the U.S. Yasmin’s work and advocacy focus on the intersections between race, gender, violence, and the law. She educates the public and policymakers on these issues and how they affect the lives of marginalized women and girls.
A light reception will follow the presentation.
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