Letters: Advocate warns against sex trafficking, exploitation

Dear Editor,

Re: “Former teacher addresses human trafficking at Richmond council,” Online, March 9

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This article completely misrepresents and discredits me and my work/advocacy to raise awareness to the rapidly growing crime of human sex trafficking/sexual exploitation and child sex trafficking in B.C. and Canada.

Best references is the TIP (Trafficking in Persons) report from the U.S. State Department for 2019 where Canada is cited as not collecting data on the issue and not consistently enforcing the current law we have ­— Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act.

Contributing factors to a rapidly growing sex industry is globalization, unregulated technology, limited law enforcement and very little prevention education. I have been working on prevention education for the last 30 years, and presenting to politicians (all three levels of government), police and the public for the last seven years full-time.

To be accused by a pro-sex industry organization of being a non-expert, incoherent in my work and causing harm is a serious and false allegation. 

B.C. is a vulnerable province for this type of criminal activity, and Vancouver is a global hotspot since it is an entry point into Canada and a port city. 

With the presence of gangs, organized crime and international crime syndicates, crime follows the money. Human sex trafficking for the purpose of prostitution is a low-risk, high-income crime and our youth and children are being aggressively targeted.

To learn about the issue, google the global experts: Valiant Richey (OSCE special representative and co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings), Dr. Ingeborg Krause (German trauma expert), Dr. Melissa Farley (prostitution research education), the National Centre of Sexual Exploitation in Washington, D.C., Shared Hope International from Washington State which produces an annual Child Sex Trafficking Report for every U.S. state, Joy Smith Foundation from Manitoba and Tiana Sharifi with SexualExploitationEducation.com from Vancouver. 

If you know of anyone you suspect is being sex trafficked for the purpose of prostitution (all underage prostitution is trafficking), call the national human trafficking hotline: 1-833-900-1010.

Cathy Peters



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