Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Child Sex Trafficking

A petition was recently started on www.change.org to help curb Wyndham hotels' (which includes Days Inn, Super 8s, Microtels, Howard Johnsons, and more) support of child sex trafficking and prostitution. 

The issue of hotels being used as prostitution hubs is certainly not new, but with the economy as it is, and travel and leisure venues having been hit extra hard, it has been easier for hotels to turn a blind eye to suspicious activity. Why? Because their rooms get filled. 

From my work in the field with prostitute populations, it's been clear that the economy has also forced more women into the sexy trade business. Motels and hotels are common rendezvous points for a hooker and her John. While I certainly do not support the business, conducting these ventures in a hotel room is safer than being on the streets, or in the back of a stranger's car.

The economy has also forced women out of the business, as even they are making less money, just like the rest of us, and to seek social services, often putting a strain on non-profit social service agencies. 

Yes, a movement to encourage hotels to allow less illicit activity is a good cause. But if you're going to spend time and money on a prostitution issue, help local non-profits deal with the actual issues at hand. Prostitution will occur whether or not Wyndham hotels continues to "support" it.

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