Screening policies and response procedures are designed to help healthcare facilities and providers deliver standardized care to all patients. Policies and procedures help eliminate bias and disparate care and ensure that healthcare providers have the resources they need in an easily accessible format.
Human trafficking screening policies and response procedures can build off of pre-existing policies related to child maltreatment, elder abuse, intimate partner violence, and sexual abuse/violence. Building off of pre-existing policies and procedures allows staff and healthcare providers to work from a place where they already have familiarity with pre-existing policies, procedures, and resources while minimizing unnecessary work to build something from scratch.
This section provides an example of a Human Trafficking Policy that could be tailored to a large hospital or a small health department. Each document includes comment bubbles that allow the user to interact with the document to get tips on tailoring it to their healthcare facility, as well as a downloadable PDF.
Most health facilities have screening policies and response protocols in place to help guide healthcare providers before they identify a victim of child maltreatment or intimate partner violence. However, for human trafficking this is much less likely – especially when considering the full scope of human trafficking, both sex and labor trafficking. Many screening policies and response protocols focus on sex trafficking with limited information about labor trafficking specific indicators and resources. This is illustrated in the data from a 2019 survey conducted with 47 health departments, federally qualified health centers, and hospitals across the State of Michigan.
State of Michigan Health Facility Screening and Response Policies Related to Child Maltreatment, Intimate Partner Violence, and Human Trafficking
|Screening Policies (n=41)||Response Protocols (n=40)|
|Child Maltreatment||32 (78.0%)||9 (22.0%)||38 (95.0%)||2 (5.0%)|
|Intimate Partner Violence||33 (80.5%)||8 (19.5%)||37 (92.5%)||3 (7.5%)|
|Human Trafficking||16 (39.0%)||25 (61.0%)||25 (62.5%)||15 (37.5%)|
|Includes Sex Trafficking||13 (81.3%)||2 (12.5%)||19 (76.0%)||3 (12.0%)|
|Includes Labor Trafficking||10 (62.5%)||5 (31.3%)||14 (56.0%)||8 (32.0%)|
Case Studies Spotlight on Human Trafficking in America
Dennis Paris operated an illegal prostitution ring in Connecticut, which he licensed as Paris Enterprises Group, LLC. He conspired with a variety of other traffickers, “sharing” girls and women, and recruited clients through the yellow pages telephone directory. He facilitated meetings between the women and girls with clients at hotels or private residences. He raped and beat his victims and used heroin to manipulate and coerce them. He also threatened to have one victim arrested if she left him. He also knew that some of his victims were still in high school. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison for sex trafficking minors.