This morning Americans were greeted with recaps of CNN's sobering and scathing report about child sex trafficking on Craigslist. This is not the first time that this allegation has made headlines, however, last night's exposé signaled the beginning of a frontal assault on a long smoldering problem of Craigslist facilitating the trafficking and sale of children for sex.
CNN interviewed child advocate Andrea Powell of anti-trafficking NGO FAIR Fund, who compared Craigslist with Walmart because of the number of visitors Craigslist attracts, at least 50 million Americans yearly; as well as the anonymity it provides both purveyors and pimps. Hopefully this coverage will push Craiglist to respond to previous demands that it block the use of its personal advertisements for these types of prurient transactions.
Last month, two young girls sold for sex on Craigslist wrote letters to CEO Jim Buckmaster and Craig Newmark. One of them, M.C. who was first forced into prostitution at 11, told them she was forced to post her own ads to Craigslist during the day, and then answer them at night. Her pimp drove her around the country for years, using Craigslist as the primary means to advertise her. If she didn't post on Craigslist, M.C.'s pimp would beat her and dunk her in ice water baths. The website was a central figure in the years of slavery and abuse she suffered. To date no one from Craigslist has responded to M.C.'s letter which was originally publicized by Malika Saada Saar, M.Ed, J.D on 19 May 2010 in The Huffington Post.
Ms. Saar is the founder and executive director of the Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a national legal and policy organization based in Washington, DC that advocates for justice, dignity, and reform for vulnerable families. The Rebecca Project has worked to reform policies and practices to render vulnerable mothers and children—and all families—free from sexual and physical violence, trauma and addiction, and to possess the opportunities to raise our children in healthy, safe, and strong communities.
Please add your name to a petition to demand that they "Make REAL Change in the Adult Services Section of Craigslist!"
- I am NOT Alissa ... Alissa via Change.org (point4counterpoint.wordpress.com)
- Petition to Ban Human Trafficking on Backpage.com (thesummitaht.wordpress.com)
- Sex Trafficking Is Big Business, Even In the US (webpronews.com)
- Women's Funding Network Releases 'Georgia Demand Study' to Craigslist; Urges Craigslist to Stop Providing a Platform for the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (prweb.com)
- Backpage Takes Heat For Prostitution Ads That Are Everywhere (forbes.com)
- Craigslist is a breeding ground for crimes against children (betweenyesterdayandtoday.wordpress.com)