Missing and Exploited by the Numbers

Asia and I are planning a series of posts around missing Black and brown girls in the US. This is some heavy fucking work and pulling this data together yesterday destroyed me.
Today, I am stronger.
The numbers below are staggering and there is still no clear picture.
I am currently working to get some type of breakdown of these statistics by race + gender, in particular Black and LatinX children. Statistics around transgender children are also elusive. We don’t even have a grasp on the populations of transgender kids, never mind where and how they are going missing. This information is not readily available or wholly accurate.
Currently the National Crime Information Center keeps statistics for the following:
  • Asian
  • Black
  • Indian
  • Unknown (it isn’t clear what “unknown” actually means or how they are defining this term)
  • White, according to NCIC, white includes Hispanic people too

Quite honestly, the record keeping is lazy and inconsiderate. We are planning to go state by state to pull that information together. The information above is what we currently are working with. It is a tiny snapshot, and now that we can see it, we can start a conversation about what this means.

It is apparent to me, and I imagine many of you reading, that we must count ourselves and save ourselves. There will be no one else who loves our kids more. We live are forced to navigate systems that are not made to see us thrive. They were not made to bring home our girls.

In the United States of America, in 2016 over 600,000 persons were reported missing. Before I go any further, many children are never even reported missing at all and therefore, this number could be, and probably is, much larger.

NCIC reports that of those persons missing, 36.7% or over 179,000 people were black children under 17 years of age.

This is difficult for me to wrap my head around, not only because I’m a mother, but, because the numbers are so elusive and they vary state by state. According to The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, there were 8.2 million reports of child pornography, sextortion, and molestation reported through their cyber tip hotline.

8.2 million reported – my brain shouts, “What wasn’t reported!!!?” and I need to pull back.

We are obviously doing something wrong, as a society, when we can’t protect our most vulnerable. To be very honest, the conversations around these numbers are even worse. The callousness with which the news of missing Black and brown girls is met is disgraceful.  From new reports to Facebook comments, “They are mostly runaways” is what we hear, as if runaways are undeserving of love, care, and consideration.

Children are exploited by, at least, the hundreds of thousands.

Our children are being bought and sold for all manner of depravity.

THEY MATTER. All of them matter!

ALL OF THEM MATTER

Every single one! I’m gonna need us to care some more!

We need to have this discussion. Now.

We need to talk about all the ways in which our children are vulnerable. We need to stop believing this evil is some boogey man in a strange van, with candy luring our kids away. Sometimes it is, sometimes its someone you know.

At least 500 girls have gone missing in the DC area recently, it is likely police and other authority figures could be involved. The sex trafficking industry is alive and well in America and it is a billion dollar industry.

Our very own president was close to and spent a considerable amount of time with known sex offender billionaire Jeffrey Epstein. Wealthy people are taking our kids. Our very own president, was elected to office while having active litigation against him for assaulting a 12 year old girl.

Wealthy and connected people are using our children and disposing of them at their leisure.

We need to talk about this and be real about the dangers our kids are facing out there. We need to figure out how to keep them safe. We need to be diligent not just with our own kids but, with every kid.

No child forgotten – No child left in the cold.

I recorded a video to explain somethings.

As mentioned above, the NCIC does not provide that an intersecting breakdown.  Iwanted to explain how I came to find the stats I did but I ended up a crying mess. My emotions get the better of me when it comes to missing and exploited kids, so it’s pretty raw but here it is.

We will begin to do more research and will continue to report as we are moved to. We don’t just want to talk about it – although this is a beautiful place to start a discussion. We want to take action.

Continue reading below

#BRINGBACKOURGIRLS.png

We will be developing some resources for you moving forward. We want to be transparent and really clear about everything we are uncovering and how we are uncovering it! We would also like to make this a collective effort. Just like with Kennedi High, who was found and brought home safe and sound because of the persistence of social media friends, we have the collective power to bring our girls home too.

We need to get and stay connected and be in communication and know who is missing and where and when. Our diligence can save lives! In the meantime here are some limited resources, as I dig deeper, I will add more and update this post when that happens!

resources

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