Do you ever find yourself wondering what book you should read next? Well, look no further, I recommend making yourself a cup of tea and settling in with a fuzzy blanket on a rainy day to take a crack at a page-turner written by Linda Smith, a U.S. Representative who founded Shared Hope International. The book is titled, “Renting Lacy, A Story of America’s Prostituted Children,” and it covers the clandestine subject that does not get nearly enough coverage: human trafficking of the United States of America’s children.Read More
I have often heard it said that the more time two people spend together, the more alike they become. Coworkers gain one another’s sense of humor, spouses take on the other's quirks, and friends learn to see the world through each other's eyes.Read More
I’ve seen several movies depicting sex trafficking in different ways, but the common factor is that they all depict it in a manner that causes shock and intrigue, yet still remains distant from the reality of the issue. Whether it’s depicting a woman who has to work on the streets and approach customers to make money for her pimp, or a dark portrayal of women being auctioned off to wealthy men, it all depicts sex-trafficking in somewhat of a glamorous manner.Read More
After viewing the TED Talk, “The Face of Human Trafficking,” which Megan Rheinschild, the Victim-Witness Assistance Program Director for the Santa Barbara District Attorney’s office, delivered last year at a TEDx conference, I was surprised at how well her use of emotional appeal drove the audience to listen to the educational concerns of trafficking. It helped me think strongly about what any ordinary individual can do to prevent sexual abuse in minors.Read More
Storytelling has long been a part of the human experience. Although the mediums and technologies have changed, their immense power to impact us remains. Documentaries are a particularly powerful form of storytelling. They have the power to appeal to our humanity, awaken our sense of empathy, and touch our souls. Letter from Masanjia does just that.Read More
Food Chains calls us to be a part of the stories of the many hands that go into our fresh produce by not being passive, silent, or ignoring the suffering that they experience. We already are a part of this system that exploits, but we also are a part of a community that can see change happen for the most vulnerable populations of our society.
So, how can we do this?Read More
My love of reading fuels my Dressember advocacy because I am naturally enthusiastic about books, and that enthusiasm creates pathways for other conversations.
Here are 3 ways that my favorite hobby has helped me grow as an advocate…Read More
If I were to have you take a survey that asked you where you buy your products, what would your answers be? Do you buy primarily from local vendors––small boutiques, farms, family-owned businesses––or do you buy products made abroad? Do you find yourself shopping on Amazon for the cutest (and cheapest) styles, or would you rather go to a store around the block from your home? Do you include a mix of both? The deeper question is, which is better?Read More
It can be difficult to believe truths that we aren’t familiar with - to accept a reality that seems so far out of touch from our own. When my hands were half of the size they are now, I used them to play basketball with my friends. My small hands guided me in my homework assignments, they supported me while I did handstands and cartwheels and swung on the monkey bars. My small hands did what small hands were supposed to do and for that, I am grateful. Around 170 million pairs of little hands around the world don’t have the same function as mine once did. Almost 11% of the world’s children are involved in child labor.Read More
The law of supply and demand requires both a buyer and a seller in order for a transaction to occur. The same applies in the sex industry.
We’ve already discussed the typical demographic of sex traffickers––romantic partners, deceitful bosses, and anyone that has convinced victims that they can be trusted––but what about buyers of sex? Who are these people that purchase other people for their own greedy, lustful desires?Read More
Have you ever thought about where hair extensions come from? The short answer is that they come from just about anywhere, and it’s not always a very pretty picture. In fact, the hair extensions we use to achieve long, luscious hair, might have been acquired through exploitation.Read More
Human trafficking is rife in the travel industry, with airports serving as common hubs for the transport of people for exploitation. Between 2011 and 2017, the National Human Trafficking Hotline received reports of 269 cases of human trafficking which referenced intersections with airlines or airports. Within the last seven years, Delta Airlines has taken action, realizing the role that airlines can play in the fight to end human trafficking.Read More
The United Nations reports that nearly 1.8 million children (individuals under the age of 18) are trafficked into the global sex trade each year. The children enslaved in the human trafficking industry face endless abuse, discrimination, and neglect as traffickers prey on their naiveté and innocence. The numbers of children affected by the sex industry are even more staggering for the LGBTQ community (those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning). LGBTQ youth are disproportionately affected by violence and stigmatization, making them more susceptible to the coercive influences of human trafficking.Read More
When I shop for makeup, I consider several different things: Is it all natural? Does the makeup company test on animals? However, I never stop too long to think about how makeup is made. If you’re anything like me, you enjoy wearing makeup that may have some shimmer to it. Although it makes us feel pretty and boosts our confidence, most shimmery makeup contains an ingredient called mica - an ingredient often available as a result of labor trafficking.Read More
In our current digital age, social media makes the world go round. There are so many online outlets that are used in order for us to remain in contact with our friends and family like: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. According to the Polaris Project, the internet has dramatically reshaped how we buy and sell things, including each other.Read More
He is everything she has ever wanted. Until he’s not. He tells her that she owes him for all of the nice dinners, clothing, jewelry, and their apartment’s rent. He tells her that she has to go inside, give herself up to paying men, and bring him the cash. He threatens to hurt her parents and her little sister if she doesn’t. She is confused and trapped, but she shuffles her feet through the front door, and then the bedroom door, and then her dress is slid up and there’s another man on top of her. It happens so fast. Just a moment later, she’s back in the car with $350 rolled up in her hand. And she and the love of her life drive away.Read More
Take a look at how I took on the challenge of using just one dress to create twenty different outfits that span across all four seasons (five outfits per season). I’d also like to give a special thanks to my roommate for serving as our beautiful model!Read More
Riverside County, the fourth largest out of all fifty-eight counties in the state of California, is home to approximately 2.4 million people. Recently, it became an increasingly popular place of residence for its convenience to places like: Big Bear Mountains, Palm Springs desert area, the Southern California beach cities, and Los Angeles. Known for its centralized location, Riverside County seems like the place to be.
What could ever be wrong?Read More
Movie-makers are far more concerned with telling good stories than they are with the accuracy of their facts. The average American watches 5,000 movies in his or her lifetime, and American households watch nearly eight hours of television per day. That creates a lot of opportunities for misinformation to sneak its way into our consciousness.Read More
Last fall, I was introduced to the Cladwell App (only available on iOS). If you've never heard of the Cladwell app it is like having a stylist in your pocket. And as a stylist, I appreciate not having to overthink my own outfits and wanted a fun and interesting way to put Dressember outfits together all December long.
Here are a few of my favorite looks from this last Dressember, some were suggestions from Cladwell, others I changed for a Custom Outfit mostly to accommodate for the cold weather:Read More