A Conversation with Crystal Bennett: Trafficking Prevention Through an Anti-Racist, Anti-Oppressive Lens

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A Conversation with Crystal Bennett: Trafficking Prevention Through an Anti-Racist, Anti-Oppressive Lens

Although it is important to recognize that human trafficking can happen to anyone, it is necessary to have critical awareness about the intersections of racism, sexism, and systems of colonization which disproportionately increase the vulnerabilities for people of color.

In a two-year review of all suspected human trafficking incidents across the United States, 94% of suspected sex trafficking victims were female with Black females accounting for 40% and Latinx females accounting for 24% (Rights4Girls, 2018). Furthermore, data shows 40% of women who were victims of sex trafficking identify as American Indian or Alaskan Native, despite representing only 10% of the general population (NCAI Policy Research Center, 2016).

Oppression is the use of power to disempower, marginalize, and silence individuals who are often thought of as “others,” while continuing to uphold the power and privilege of those who oppress. The selling of Black and Indigenous women and children for sexual purposes has occurred for centuries and it’s time to call it out and dismantle the oppressive systems which continue to allow its manifestation.

Join us to learn more about how human trafficking connects to broader systems of structural oppression, explore how society’s values, ideas and power relationships have normalized the violence experienced by people of color and learn about our collective responsibility to eradicate and respond to human trafficking through an anti-racist and anti-oppressive lens. 


  1. Evaluate the occurrence of trafficking through the lens of intersectionality
  2. Define anti-racism and anti-oppression
  3. Call out the structures of oppression and societal values that normalize violence against “others”
  4. Identify the individual and collective actions that can be used to apply an anti-racist, anti-oppression lens towards anti-human trafficking work


Presenter: Crystal Bennett, LMSW  Founder/CEO of THRYVE

Crystal is an educator, an advocate, a survivor and a self-proclaimed thriver!  For the past 25 years she has been driven by her personal experiences of trauma to elevate and amplify the voices of individuals and communities in order to promote healing and opportunities to move from surviving to thriving. 

Crystal has demonstrated a passion in sharing her experiences in order to help individuals heal from their personal traumas and work alongside professionals to create trauma informed, culturally inclusive and person-centered spaces.

Her experiences include advocacy within the child welfare system, oversight of child and youth programs, crisis hotline response, delivery of community based mental health services and implementing trauma informed strategies and programs for school districts. She has been called upon to provide training, coaching and consultation across the nation in the subject areas of Human Trafficking, Suicide Prevention, Motivational Interviewing, Child Trauma & Maltreatment and Racial Trauma.

She is a fierce advocate for social justice and leads courageously to dismantle oppressive systems and create equitable and just services, policies and programs.