Residential programs for child prostitutes which are not licensed by the State’s Department of Social Services violates laws designed to protect children living in out-of-home-care. State Department of Social Services has the legal authority to enter homes providing 24 hour care without a community care license and to remove minor children from those unlicensed homes.
Very few of the proposed programs advertising their services to rescue and restore children victimized by prostitution qualify for a license by the State Department of Social Services. Many lack credentialed staff, few if any submit fingerprints of their staff/volunteers to the Department of Justice for criminal record checks and clearance for the Child Abuse Central Index to check for previous allegations of child abuse.
One program offering residential services to young women escaping prostitution locked down the home at night while one staff person held the only key to the exit so the young women couldn’t escape at night–even if there was a fire!
Some of the help being proposed to help our American children who are prostituting may be worse than or equal to the dominance and exploitation of a pimp.
The State Department of Social Services has guidelines for providing 24 hour care and supervision of children requiring staff-child ratios, nutrition, sleeping areas with windows, mandatory education, fire alarms, emergency intervention plans, runaway plans, etc.
Some of these new programs are so smug that they fail to inform a parent or guardian of the children with whom they offer services because they presume the parent is bad if a child is discovered prostituting.
Buyer’s Beware – Parents and children are vulnerable to these unlicensed programs because few parents are aware of how to contact the Department of Social Services to investigate a program or to file a complaint.
With all of the federal dollars and all of the law enforcement efforts to rescue American children from prostitution and prosecute their pimps, there is NOT ONE AGENCY or government effort to educate parents and children on methods to evaluate the quality of residential care provided to prostituted children in America.
Many of these so-called intervention programs for American child prostitutes fail to recognize that all children, even prostituted children, are entitled to appropriate care and supervision, an education, medical, dental, and psychological services–services equal to those provided to crippled children, blind children and developmentally disabled children.
I am committing the next five years to assisting the Department of Children’s Services and Child Protective Services in developing programs to address the needs of our American children who have not only been forced to prostitute but are being readied to prostitute in years to come.
In the meantime, I ask my colleagues to help me understand what about American culture creates such sexual hysteria that all child protection laws and regulations are disregarded when it comes to the rescue and restoration of children who have been victimized by prostitution? What makes some American people think that sexually exploited children are entitled to a lesser social service?
What fantasies are dancing in the heads of these do-gooders?