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Our Mission

Our mission is to eradicate exploitation and human trafficking throughout Southeast Wisconsin and empower those affected by the issue using a trauma-informed, victim-centered approach. We achieve this through three key pillars: prevention, intervention, and restoration. Our efforts include:

  • Prevention education for local anti-trafficking efforts, direct services providers, and multidisciplinary teams across Southeast Wisconsin regarding nationally-recognized best practices, including Kenosha County Public Health Department and American Massage Therapy Association; Wisconsin Chapter.
  • Tools to support a more effective response to victims of human trafficking such as a statewide victim referral directory, a survivor support fund, and a resource network for multidisciplinary providers.
  • An online learning library with human trafficking educational resources recommended by those on the front lines working with victims and survivors of human trafficking, as well as those with lived experience.
  • Public policy advocacy to support Wisconsin’s anti-trafficking response that is informed by effective nationally-recognized practices and which meets the needs of the Wisconsin community.

Our Philosophy

Human trafficking is a complex issue. It is critical that anti-trafficking efforts uphold best practices to ensure the highest level of prevention education and care for victims and survivors. For that reason, Fight to End Exploitation supports the following philosophy regarding prevention, intervention, and restoration efforts.

Our Core Values
  • Collaboration – We believe that the fight to end exploitation must be approached collaboratively through community awareness, multidisciplinary intervention, and holistic restoration.
  • Integrity – As leaders in the fight to end exploitation and human trafficking, we believe in organizational transparency for our stakeholders and strategic stewardship.
  • Empowerment – We believe in a culture of empowerment for our team, our partners, and those we serve.
  • Curiosity – We believe that knowledge is an ongoing commitment and curiosity fuels innovation and creativity.
Our Guiding Principles
  • Human trafficking violates a person’s human rights.
  • Each individual’s experience is unique, and human trafficking cases fall on a wide spectrum of exploitation, where many rise to the level of modern-day slavery.
  • It is a fundamental right to be free of labor/sexual exploitation in all of its forms.
  • Victims of human trafficking are victims through force, threat of force, fraud, or coercion.
  • The intersections of oppression (gender, immigration status, disability, history of abuse, economic status, ethnic background, sexual orientation, etc.) increase vulnerability of people to trafficking and present additional barriers to accessing services after they have been trafficked.
  • There are many conditions that foster human trafficking, including: poverty, forced migration, racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, and classism.
  • Individuals alone cannot end the conditions that promote human trafficking, and a multidisciplinary community response is necessary to make a substantive social and institutional change.
​Victim Services should be:
  • Trauma-informed, evidenced-informed, and based on the empowerment model of service provision and recovery. An empowerment model of service provision is strengths-based, comprehensive, and respects an individual’s autonomy and self-determination.
  • Connected formally and informally with a victim-centered, multidisciplinary response, and informed by organizational policies and protocols. In a victim-centered approach, the victim’s wishes, safety, and well-being take priority.
Prevention Education Efforts should be:
  • Built on existing statewide and/or regional training efforts and curricula.
  • Reliant on local expertise and information and connected with local experts as well as statewide infrastructure such as the Wisconsin Anti-Trafficking Consortium.
  • Strategically aimed at audiences where there is the highest risk for exploitation or the greatest opportunity for identification and referral.
  • Inclusive of survivors in the development and implementation of programming.

Eradicating Exploitation for All

At Fight to End Exploitation, we strive to lead with our core values and belief in eradicating exploitation for everyone. Human trafficking affects all demographics however, there are some risk factors that make specific populations more vulnerable.  One higher risk population is Black women and girls. According to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, compared to their racial counterparts, Black women and girls suffer higher rates of low socioeconomic status, child welfare and criminal justice involvement, education gaps, and history of physical/sexual abuse. Coupled with their hypersexualization and treatment of Black girls as older than they really are must be taken into account when identifying the prevalence of sex trafficking through the United States.  Another high-risk population is the LGBTQ+ and QPOC communities. The National Coalition for the Homeless found that LGBTQ+ youth are approximately 7.4 times more likely to experience acts of sexual violence than heterosexual homeless youth. Individuals identifying as LGBTQ+ and QPOC have higher rates of discrimination, violence, and economic instability as well as fewer resources and social supports. These vulnerabilities are often targeted and exploited by traffickers and abusers.

Studies show that Black women and girls and LGBTQ+ and QPOC communities are overrepresented in prostitution-related offenses, report higher levels of police misconduct, and state the prevalence of implicit bias when working with welfare, criminal justice, and restorative systems. 

Fight to End Exploitation aims to support and advocate for individuals affected by human trafficking and those in the sex industry. This includes individuals who identify as LGBTQ+, QPOC, and Black. We also acknowledge that intersectional experiences factor into risk factors, vulnerabilities, and restoration of victims and survivors of human trafficking.

Adapted from Wisconsin Human Trafficking Protocol and Resource Manual, 2012 and the Maine Sex Trafficking and Exploitation Network.