Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

Sex trafficking

Sex trafficking

  • exp dev rem

    Police lines (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

    In the back of a police car after my arrest, I remember thinking: at least I am going somewhere my trafficker can’t hurt me. 

    It was 2010, and I had met a man who trafficked me into prostitution. At 23, I was a vulnerable target. I had fled an abusive home in Mexico for Brooklyn. I was undocumented and live

  • hersh

    Lauren Hersh, the author (at podium), and other activists 

    Sarah was 13 years old when she was lured into prostitution by two men from her New York City neighborhood. For the next two years, she was sold to buyers who were eager to purchase her adolescent body. Her pimp required her to meet a quota and when she didn't, she was brutalized.

    There were many moments when Sarah tried to leave the life of prostitution. Each time, her exploiter would threaten to harm her or worse, her little sister. Sarah felt helpless and trapped. So, she stayed.

    Sarah was