3. Awareness is respectful.
Our efforts at raising awareness can actually perpetuate misunderstandings that hurt those we want to help—or they could simply fall far short of being empowering. In a story about child sex trafficking, for example, the words “child prostitute” and “victim of sex trafficking” should evoke very different mental images and emotional reactions. However, this is not always the case. (In one unfortunate story, The Village Voice actually refers to child trafficking victims as “tots-titutes,” essentially painting trafficking victims as people who are actively seeking sex for money.)
As you share a relevant news story or craft your own pieces of writing about trafficking, be sure to honor those affected with your language. Choose your words carefully, and be respectful. You can read through the Love146 Language and Media Guide for more helpful tips on how to communicate in a way that assists survivors of child trafficking.