It’s sexual assault awareness month & child abuse prevention month. It’s time to prevent abuse in your family.
It’s completely normal for parents to feel uncomfortable talking about sexual abuse. To start the conversation, it is best to weave the messages into day-to-day interactions- dinnertime, bath time, driving to an outing or bedtime. Putting down the phone, getting off of social media and getting some one-on-one time is always the BEST approach to having these kind of difficult conversations.
For children 5 and under, keep the rules simple and easy to remember- 1) Say No, 2) Get Away, and 3) Tell an Adult Frequently remind them so that they memorized it like the fire safety method of 1) Stop, 2) Drop, and 3) Roll. This isn’t a one-time conversation. The more you talk about it, the more your child will remember and become comfortable talking about this kind of issue. Example talking points: “No one should EVER touch your private parts except the doctor help keep you healthy.” “Never keep secrets about touching.”
For children between the ages of 6-9, you can add more specifics. Example talking points:
“No one should EVER see or touch your private body parts.” “You shouldn’t see or touch other people’s private body parts, either.”
Children 10 and over can handle detailed rules. Since they can read, consider posting them in your home along with other, more general safety rules like “No downloading apps or games without permission.” Example talking points: “Another person should NEVER ask to see or photograph your private body parts.” “You should NEVER be asked to touch or look at another person’s private body parts.”
This information has been provided by Val Senegal, Education Director of Hearts of Hope.
Still in denial that human trafficking occurs on American soil? Well, it's time to put away that notion and face this very harsh and cruel reality. During 2017, 361 defendants in criminal human trafficking cases saw their charges resolved. Some were convicted of a federal crime, while others were acquitted by a jury or saw the court dismiss the charges against them. Federal courts convicted 95.3% of the resolved defendants, acquitted 1.1% of the resolved defendants, and dismissed charges against 3.6%.
Sex trafficking of minors has the highest conviction rating of 98.2%. The courts sentenced 94.7% of the defendants to some term of imprisonment in 2017, while the remaining 5.3% of sentenced defendants received no term of imprisonment. Seven life sentences were handed down by the court system in 2017, six of which were in sex trafficking cases involving only child victims and one in a sex trafficking case involving both adult and child victims.
Federal courts ordered 19.9% of the defendants in 54 human trafficking cases to pay restitution to their victims. This represents a slight increase from 2016, where courts ordered 18.2% to pay restitution.The number of victims involved in a criminal human trafficking case is difficult to identify for several reasons- public court documents often identify victims of substantive human trafficking charges using initials, pseudonyms, or "Jane/John Doe" to protect the victim’s privacy. In other charges, such as conspiracy, victims may be grouped together without identifying a specific number. Therefore, the number of victims that public court documents identified are often only a subset of the actual number of victims exploited.
Commercial sex that is internet based occurs when a defendant’s primary method of soliciting customers for sexual services was through an online website or social media platform. The websites disclosed by the public court documents in 2017 criminal cases included:
A Plus Bunnies, Adult Friend Finder, Adult Hookups, All the Lovers, Backpage, Body Rub Lists, Call Escort, CityVibe, Craigslist, Date Hookup, Eccie, Eros, Erotic Mugshots, Erotic Review, Escorts Click 2 Call, Escorts Forever, Escorts Jiji, Escorts Meet, Escort Profile, Escorts Xport, Evil Empire, Executive Companion, Explicit Chicago, Facebook, Friends 4 Rent, Grindr, Independent Girls, Instagram, Kendra of Atlanta, KiK Messenger, MeetMe, Miss Scarlet White, MocoSpace, MyRedBook, MyProvider, Pinger, Platinum Companions, Plenty of Fish, Seeking Arrangement, A Sexy Service, Skip the Games, Tagged, TNA Board, Whats App, Whisper & Yahoo.
Are any of these apps downloaded on your child's devices? Do you know if your child visited any of these websites? Given all of these facts, isn't it best to start applying more protective measures towards our children and their cell phone usage? To read more of the detailed Federal 2017 report, please click HERE. This information has been provided by Val Senegal, Education Director of Hearts of Hope.
Cosmo After Dark is a new channel on SnapChat’s “discover” section that goes live every Friday at 6pm. Cosmo describes their new SnapChat feature as “an X-rated weekly edition that is exclusively dedicated to all things hot and horny.” If you look below this article, you'll see some screen shots straight from SnapChat that your kids can easily access on Cosmo After Dark. Be mindful that there's never been any parental controls on SnapChat but if you are reading this with your child, VIEWER DISCRETION IS ADVISED!
Snapchat is a publicly traded company with a strict focus on making money. Social media is a competitive industry and they are doing everything to stay on top. With pornography being a billion dollar industry, what a win-win for the two to join forces," Val Senegal, Hearts of Hope's Education Director.
Now is the time to become the vigilant parent. We have been saying this for two years now, monitor your children's electronics and social media accounts. Use two-party authentication to control their logins and activity. Have access to their accounts on your own devices as well as the passwords. Set strict consequences when they violate any of the ground rules you've laid regarding social media. Have a conversation with them OFTEN about the dangerous effects of pornography. What you do today, matters later when your child becomes an adult.
Viewer discretion advised
Viewer Discretion Advised