Human Trafficking: When pimps replace parents

There was no manipulation or brainwashing when Savannah Sanders was coerced into prostitution when she was 16 years old. A pimp simply put his hand on her back and said she’d be “working” for him now. 
Sanders said she could have fought back, but years of prior sexual abuse during childhood had deteriorated her self-worth. She was in a mindset where she did what she was told.
“I was very vulnerable to being picked up by a pimp because he knew what to look for and how to exploit those vulnerabilities,” she said. 
Sanders spent nine months prostituting out of a massage parlor in Phoenix. When police grew suspicious of the facility, Sanders’ pimp let her leave for a couple weeks and she never went back. 
She is now married with four children and works as the training coordinator for the Sandra Day O’Connor Institute’s Safe Action Project, which raises awareness on the sexual exploitation of children.

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