Councilwoman Traci Park Takes Action to Combat Human Trafficking Among Homeless Youth

Councilwoman Traci Park takes urgent action to address the alarming rates of sex trafficking among homeless youth in Los Angeles


Los Angeles, CA – In an effort to combat human trafficking among homeless youth, Councilwoman Traci Park called on City Departments today to investigate and propose steps to prevent this abuse in the City of Los Angeles.  Youth experiencing homelessness are trafficked at high rates, and unsheltered youth are particularly vulnerable to falling victim to sex trafficking.


A study found that 10 percent of homeless youth in Los Angeles are involved in human trafficking, with 25 percent having engaged in commercial sex.  Another report from the Family & Youth Services Bureau (FYSB) found that  27.5 percent of homeless youth exchanged sex for a place to stay.


“We cannot turn a blind eye to human trafficking among our homeless youth,”said Councilwoman Park. “Our action will address this scourge with the urgency that’s required so that we can identify its scope and prevent youth trafficking from occurring in the first place.”


Megan Montes of the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services added, “When youth are unhoused or in unstable living situations, they are often forced into situations to meet their basic needs. They are at higher risk of trafficking and other crimes because of the lack of safe and caring housing. When our youth do not have even their most basic needs being met, let alone being fulfilled, predators often find them.”


The Los Angeles Homelessness Housing Authority (LAHSA) has implemented several programs to address this issue, including the Youth Family Reconnection Program and the Host Homes Program. However, more needs to be done.


On Tuesday, Councilwoman Park moved to instruct the Community Investment for Families Department, with assistance from the Office of the Chief of Legislative Analysis and other relevant departments, to investigate and report on solutions that will prevent human trafficking among homeless youth.

 “As a dedicated public servant, I believe it is our responsibility to take action and support the most vulnerable members of our community,” said Park.