"All our kids are vulnerable": Standing up to child sex trafficking in Tucson
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - It happens in the movies: girls sold for sex. But the truth is, it's not just movies anymore. It's happening right here in Tucson.
"It's all our kids who are vulnerable," said councilman Steve Kozachik.
After 9OYS's story Thursday night where a 16-year-old victim spoke out, Kozachik called 90YS to let us know the community is coming together to combat this epidemic through awareness.
"The whole community should take this personally," said Kozachik.
"These kids don't come from prostitution-ville in southern Arizona," said Beth Jacobs. "There's no such place. They come from our families our churches."
Former survivors like Jacobs are part of the effort. She formed a support groups for victims called "Willow Way".
"I can't remember how many times I've been raped," said Jacobs. "How many times a gun has been pulled."
It's one of several groups here in Tucson.
"There's so much to heal from," said Jacobs.
But the ultimate goal to catch the signs often times right in front of us: random cars showing up at the same house, blocked off windows, men coming and going around the clock. They are signs that girls could be in danger, right down your street.
"They're going to be looking for it," said Jacobs. "If they see something shady they're going to call."
And that call could save a life.
Sold No More, a local group working to raise awareness about the evils of sex trafficking, will be hosting several forums alongside TPD. They will be held sometime in June. Organizers say it's a great chance for parents to come out and learn what they can do to protect their kids. For more information on Sold No More, click here.
As for the forums being organized by Kozachik and other community partners, no tentative date is set.
Stay with 9OYS for more information on these events.