Cultural Competency When Serving Trafficking Survivors

This February, we spend time considering and honoring black history. We reflect on the fact that over 40% of those who are victimized by trafficking are African American and almost 80% are otherwise people of color.

Check out this webinar where three professionals reflect cultural competency practices in their treatment of survivors through their varying areas of expertise.

Moderator - Alia Dewees, Safe House Project Aftercare Development Director

"In my own experience in finding healing from trafficking and trauma as a survivor of color, I found it difficult to identify with many of the cultural practices of the new environment in which I was receiving care. In an attempt to re-identify myself post-trauma, I needed to spend time deconstructing these cultural tones from my new self and have heard similar sentiments from many of my survivor sisters and brothers. As an industry, we recognize a survivor for the value of the whole of who they are. It is our hope that this webinar may serve as an encouragement towards future discussions on the implementation of culturally competent practices in the treatment of survivors."

Speaker Highlights

Dr. Marlene Carson

Marlene is a SurThrivalist, #Minister, #Author, #Publisher, #Founder of Rahab’s Hideaway and CEO of The Switch Anti-Trafficking Network. While many have a textbook knowledge of the perils faced by teenage girls who are forced into prostitution, Marlene knows from her own personal experience. At age 15, she became one of the tens of thousands of girls and young adult women who are exploited daily. She is a native of Columbus, Ohio, but her heart for injustice knows no boundaries. Marlene’s work has been a leader in changing legislation. Her work has been featured on Katie Couric, Oprah Winfrey , and the CNN Freedom Project, as well as on international and national news. As a consultant, one of Marlene’s desires is to educate and empower organizations that have a passion to protect, a desire to provide, and ability to see victims as priceless. Marlene has received many awards and commendations including President Barack Obama’s Presidential Lifetime Achievement Award.

Saulo Ortiz, LCSW

Saulo is a straight shooting, real trainer and motivational speaker, whose energy, passion, and charisma provide a breath of fresh air to mental health and substance abuse services in order to bring about long lasting change.

Rachel Thomas

A graduate of UCLA with a Masters in Education and a personal survivor of human trafficking, Rachel has over 12 years’ experience in teaching, mentoring, corporate training, curriculum writing and public speaking. She has educated and inspired a wide range of audiences including teens, social service providers, churches, teachers, college students, law enforcement and lawmakers. One of her most meaningful accomplishments is Ending The Game Intervention Curriculum which is being used in over 180 facilities nationwide to help survivors break the bonds of attachment to traffickers and/or the lifestyle of commercial sexual exploitation.



Email us at or visit

About Us.

Safe House Project’s mission is to increase survivor identification beyond one percent through education, provide emergency services and placement to survivors, and ensure every survivor has access to safe housing and holistic care by accelerating safe house capacity and development across America. Our vision is to united communities to end domestic sex trafficking and restore hope, freedom, and a future to every survivor.

Learn more.


Instagram: @safehouseproject

Facebook: @SafeHousePrjct