I would like to introduce Melanie Casey who is a Sex Assault Counselor at Wardenburg Health Center. With a Masters Degree in Social Services – Mental Health and over 10 years’ experience, Mrs. Casey specialized in serving victims of sexual assault and incest, ages 13 and over. She provides counseling individuals, group facilitation, advocacy, and court and medical accompaniments to assault survivors, as needed. Our interview begin with the following questions:
1. What can we do to help prevent sex trafficking in the USA?
Melanie Casey reply: I think we need to increase awareness first of all, better monitor the massage parlors and escort services as well as reach out with programs and assistance to runaways which are often targeted for human trafficking.
2. Should we get kid’s at young age more aware of the prevention of sex trafficking?
Melanie Casey reply: Bringing attention to the problem to kids while still in school is a critical factor in increasing awareness among children about what can happen if they run away or get into certain situations where they can be a target of this modern day slavery.
3. Would requiring a certain age limit on social media help prevent sex trafficking?
Melanie Casey reply: I don’t think requiring a certain age on social media would be a cure-all but it could certainly help. There are ways for children to get around the age issue during registration but I think making parents more aware of the issue as well and providing more safety on the internet could help a lot. Unfortunately, for the runaways and illegal immigrants crossing over and being prey for the sex traffic trade, has little to do with social media.
4. How could increasing the consequences of being caught with sex trafficking help prevent it? Melanie Casey reply: Increasing the consequences for offenders would be key in prevention. We are much too lenient as a country with sexual predators and I think if we made the punishment much more severe that would be a much better deterrent.
5. How can we prevent sex trafficking for good?
Melanie Casey reply: I don’t think that sex trafficking will ever go away for good, no matter how severe the punishment for those caught perpetrating these crimes. Much more awareness, more severe punishment and more emphasis on the family unit, safety and values instilled will help.
6. How could a movie related to sex trafficking get more people involved in help preventing this issue?
Melanie Casey reply: There actually have been some movies recently put out which shows the realization of this horrible issue. For example, Taken and Human Trafficking bring visual awareness which in turn can be very effective in helping people get more involved in fighting this very large issue.
7. How can a brochure prevent sex trafficking?
Melanie Casey reply: By providing a brochure it would describe the tactics criminal groups use to coerce and traffic women and children, the risks of trafficking, what women can do to protect themselves against illegitimate groups, what are victims’ rights in the U.S., and how women can get help while in the United States.
8. What kinds of cases are you seeing come across your desk relating to sex trafficking?
Melanie Casey reply: I have counsel a few case relating to sex trafficking, where young teens had been focused into prostitution and assisting them in their healing process. Every case has been different and each victim has different needs.
9. How can men help in preventing sex trafficking?
Melanie Casey reply: The simple answer would be to stop supporting commercial exploitation. For example massage parlors, escort service, and strip clubs. By equipping and empowering men with general knowledge about this issue many women and children can be saved.
Overall, I would like to thank Mrs. Casey for her time and consideration in speaking with me about this topic.The reason why I selected her is because her background with working with victims of sex assaults and her passion for helping others. By taking this time to interview with her, my desire to research further into preventing sex trafficking has increased with new awareness.