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‘My name is Karly’:
Sex trafficking victim
joins police on front lines
in battle against exploitation
Jennifer Barr, CBC News, February 18, 2020
Warning, this story contains graphic content that readers may find disturbing.
Karly Church, 31, escaped the dangerous world of domestic sex trafficking when a police officer found her in a hotel room, and her two traffickers were arrested.
Six years later, Church now works as a crisis intervention counsellor with Victim Services of Durham Region, east of Toronto. She also teams up with Durham Regional Police detectives in the field to help underage girls and young women caught up in the heinous crime.
“I want to instill hope,” Church says. “I want them to see that there is a way out, and there is the ability that they can reach any goal that they have for themselves. That you don’t have to be stuck, that there are people who care.”
Human trafficking is a fast-growing crime in Canada and one of the most difficult to beat.
How I Was Recruited into Sex Trafficking
Survivor Casandra Diamond reveals Canada’s dark underbelly
By Casandra Diamond, October 18, 2019, The Kit
To the people of Canada:
For nine long, horrible years, I was trafficked in the sex industry. I was no more than “girl number four,” valued only for my outward appearance and ability to please customers. I regularly saw 12 to 14 men per night. I was punched, slapped, bitten and worse, all in the name of my so-called “job.” My customers wanted the porn-star experience, things that they wouldn’t do with someone they loved or respected. My story is not an uncommon one.
What will be surprising to you is that during the time that I was being trafficked, I was working in licensed massage parlours in Toronto. These are not places where registered massage therapists work, though they may look that way from the outside. Bylaw officers, police and city officials would inspect our facility, and yet it continued to operate. It made me feel that the atrocities that I was experiencing, along with the hundreds of women and girls that worked with me, were acceptable. No one appeared to care or notice that our situation was unbearable.
Human Trafficking Survivor Settles Lawsuit Against Motel Where She Was Held Captive
Editor’s note: This report includes graphic and disturbing descriptions of assault.
In the summer of 2011, Lisa Ricchio received a call from a man she knew. He said he was in Massachusetts, in pain from a recent surgery, and needed help.
“I went down to meet him, and from there, that’s where my nightmare kind of began,” says Ricchio, who lived in Maine at the time.
Together, they checked into the Shangri-La Motel in Seekonk, Mass. Once they closed the door, he suddenly turned violent.
“I was held against my will for several days, and during that, he sexually assaulted me nonstop. He had burned me on my privates,” Ricchio says. “He had cut me; he didn’t allow me to eat or drink. It was truly a nightmare. Along with him telling me that I was going to be a prostitute to make him income.”
At least twice while she was held captive, Ricchio claims motel employees saw her in distress but failed to intervene. Ricchio ultimately escaped, and her abuser was arrested and sentenced to prison.
Then, Ricchio did something novel.
I invoke the Mother, Quan Yin, the Magdalena
the Halion Engineers, the Divine Blessings and Virtues,
Universal Laws, Dimensional Growth Patterns for balance,
and for the elimination of bigotry, hatred, limitation,
control, lack of self-love and lack of self-worth,