05 Apr The exploitation stops and new life begins
New life is beginning
as women escape exploitation
It’s been five months since the REST Emergency Receiving Center (ERC) opened, and lives are changing daily.
Learning about the many women accessing services is an incredible reminder of how much the ERC is needed…and the horror of where they would be without a place to stay, to get care, to get support from other survivors, and to get life back.
Women escaping exploitation.
Women getting needed medical care.
Women freed from chemical dependency.
Those are the reasons we support SAFE and SAFE supports REST.
Last month, something happened that law enforcement has been wanting for years. The Seattle Police Department set up a sting operation, and that night were able to bring six women to REST instead of taking them to detention.
Each woman was able to get a hot meal, clothing and hygiene items, and connect with an advocate to learn about services. All of the women were grateful to be brought to REST and exposed to ways they could get help, and one even called the hotline the next day and moved into the ERC shelter.
That option wasn’t available six months ago.
Exploited women can now be treated like victims and those who need care, instead of like criminals who’ve done something wrong. It’s a beautiful thing, and SAFE is grateful to the Seattle PD, REST and our donors who have helped make that happen.
Enough words from us. We want you to hear directly from our sisters at the ERC
Pamela had an experience of being trafficked which later turned into exchanging sex for survival. She had been living in an abandoned building for the month before coming into the ERC shelter. After coming into the ERC, she told us about a decision she had made before she called: that if REST didn’t have a bed, she was going to end her life.
Thankfully, she was able to move into the shelter, where she worked with the case manager on getting access to a detox center and made plans to relocate to a safe family member’s home in another city after she completes treatment.
Brandy came to the ERC shelter after fleeing her trafficker who had beaten her. She had tried to leave the life before, but it had never worked. She said this time was different. The supportive environment at the ERC has helped her feel like she can finally get away from her trafficker for good. She said, “You don’t judge me here. I can really be myself and tell you everything.”
THANK YOU to our supporters for providing new life and a supportive environment that
allows women to finally escape and heal.
On behalf of the women at the ERC and our whole SAFE team, thank you for linking arms with us to fight commercial sexual exploitation in our state.
We’d love to share this message of hope with others in your circle of influence. Please contact us at the email below to make that happen so together we can bring more care, life, and support to our sisters in need.
For more information or if you have questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org