I have personally witnessed it in the red-light districts of India and at karaoke bars in China, but I too was shocked to learn how much sex trafficking is happening in the United States. Once I became aware of the brutality that women and children experience to line the pockets of their pimps, I knew I couldn’t be a silent witness.
I had recently produced a documentary on the orphan crisis in India. So I knew I could pull together a passionate team to bring this issue to the attention of the average American. And I knew it couldn’t be another statistic-laden film driven by talking-head experts.
After approaching Abolition International and its founder, Natalie Grant, we developed the idea for a three-part campaign to help stop sex trafficking in the United States. Set to release in bookstores and online in 2014 by Word Entertainment, the IN PLAIN SIGHT campaign will include a documentary, compilation music album, and 31-day study guide.
For the documentary, we’ll travel to five U.S. cities (they may not be the first cities you think of when it comes to sex trafficking). We plan to document five unsuspecting families as they go about their everyday lives, and as they open their eyes to what’s happening “in plain sight” right down the street from them. As the viewer connects with a family, we hope they’ll also have an “ah-ha” moment about what may be happening in their own city as well.
Frankly, most sex-trafficking documentaries are completely depressing. But we’re committed to making IN PLAIN SIGHT an inspiring film. In order to do so, we’ll be profiling the work of five different aftercare homes (one in each city) by sharing stories of freedom and hope that are rising out of the darkness of sexual slavery. Each one of those non-profits happen to be part of the Abolition International Shelter Association.
We want viewers to be motivated by real solutions that are now emerging. People are experiencing positive results, and we need to learn from them and take those lessons to other cities.
To fund the project, we’re in the process of raising a lean budget of $75,000 through the Indiegogo crowd-funding platform, similar to Kickstarter.
Readers of the FCPA Blog who would like to learn more or make a tax-deductible donation can visit us at www.StoriesofFreedom.com.
David Trotter is a documentary filmmaker, speaker, and writer, based in Orange County, California. He is the Executive Producer and Co-host of MOTHER INDIA: Life Through the Eyes of the Orphan. He can be contacted here.