Nov. 21, 2021

One scary night on the strip

Last spring, I accompanied Betty on my second trip to the strip. I was shocked to see that the trafficking had not changed even with COVID going strong. You see it is a money business and the traffickers do not care about anything that gets between them and the money that the victims make.
This truth became very clear the later the night became. The boldness of the traffickers is something to see. They will flaunt their
presence and the cops do nothing but watch. The victims will walk the strip in
high heels until their feet bleed and then they take a quick stop to get a
snack or a drink that we are offering with no strings attached, we are allowed
to do this because the traffickers see that it helps the victims make them more
That night I would witness a fight between two traffickers over
"their property". One of the traffickers decided that he wanted the
property of another. Victims work in pairs, and they protect one another on the
street from other victims, johns, and other traffickers. In a split second, we
went from calm to someone trying to kidnap a victim. The victim began yelling
for help, the Wifey (trafficker's most trusted victim) came to her rescue, and
then out came the new trafficker (trying to kidnap the victim) and his handler
(person who corrals the victims and makes them do what they are told). At this
point, Betty had already gone to get between the people that had come to see
what we do and the action ensued. We didn't need a hand full of donors in the
middle of a snatch and grab. The heat began to rise along with the tempers of
not only the victim and her wife but also in the crowd that had developed.
Betty had already placed her hand on her gun and was ready to defend the little
group that we were. Betty was able to convince our group to back up a bit and
this helped to somewhat defuse the situation. I could tell it wasn't over, not
yet. For now, though the victim wasn't kidnapped again.
Most people like to believe that prostitution is a choice that
adults make. The truth is that 9/10 times prostitution is a sentence placed on
a child. The child is lured into a hell hole by the glamour of pretty clothes,
mani-pedis, and money. Children are easier to lure than adults. That child
eventually turns into an adult, and then ages out (no longer profitable), and
doesn't know anything else. These adults are victims as well. The adult victims
have already had their self-worth destroyed and demoralized to the point that
they no longer care about their worth other than in cash payment.
Written by Stacy Burr, RN