“As long as people are willing to pay for sex trafficking, it is going to continue. We need to stop the buyers from buying.”
Imagine you are making plans with your child one day, and the next day she is missing. It’s every parents nightmare. Is she okay? Where did she go? Who took her? Why did they take her? Some parents get to find out these answers, and some don’t.
Molly was a victim of sex trafficking. Her parents, sadly, were not able to be there for her when she was rescued because they had passed away. Even after being abducted, losing her parents, Molly is a fighter as she beat the odds of living after being trafficked. You see, once a person is forced into the world of sex trafficking, the average life span is 7 years. Molly was abducted when she was at a party with her friends at the age of 18, and she was rescued 10 years later. Her story is hopeful…
Molly is from Oshkosh, WI and was abducted at the age of 18 of men she did not know, other than talking to them for 10 minutes at a party. Her abductors brought her down to Georgia where she was trafficked unwillingly for 10 years. Molly got brainwashed as to thinking she was in a relationship with one of the men, and he forced her to make money for him by selling herself.
Molly’s family and the FBI had been trying to find her for years, and after 10 years, a group helping women who were trafficked in GA found her. She was placed in a witness protection house in Wisconsin. She was doing great trying to regain her identity and relationships with her family. She was motivated to stay out of being trafficked.
One short year later, the same kidnappers found Molly back in Wisconsin and once again, abducted her. It wasn’t until she was arrested for prostitution that the police were able to find her captors who were sentenced to years in prison.
At this time, she did not have anywhere to go, so she went to Harbor House (Domestic Violence Shelter) for a couple months before being referred to housing programs, and she chose Salvation Army’s Project Home. This is when Molly met Mindy Howell, The Salvation Army – Fox Cities Case Worker, that she worked closely with.
Mindy states that Molly wanted to get her life back together. She was involved with REACH program where she could do motivational speaking, because they had an advocacy program. Unfortunately, drugs and alcohol come with territory sex trafficking. Molly explains that it is what got her through the day. She was dealing with PTSD and AODA. She was well on her way to getting clean from everything through the Celebrate Recovery program.
After 7 months of staying at The Salvation Army scattered housing and working with Case Management, she disappeared. Mindy had reached out to her family who said, “We had heard from her and she is not safe.”
After talking to Mindy and experts in this area, it’s important we get these stories out for people to hear because it doesn’t always end up “happy”. The community will continue to pray for Molly and do good for others who are in the same situation. That said, Mindy had some excellent insight about sex trafficking that would behoove us to listen to. She states, “As long as people are willing to pay for sex trafficking, it is going to continue. We need to stop the buyers from buying.” She continues, “The public needs to hear about where it is happening, what the red flags are, and what to do if red flags are spotted.”
If you are unsure what you can do about sex trafficking, check out below:
- Educating yourself
- Attending more presentations or events
- Share information in your community
- Follow anti-trafficking organization on Facebook, Twitter, etc.
- Know the red flags
To find information on the above points, click here.