I saw myself in this story, and a few days later, I let Ms. I'd never trusted another person enough to tell the whole story, and that's when I found out what sex trafficking was and that I had been a victim.
She answered my questions about everything I'd experienced and seen.
Then she took money from them and said we could leave. She walked off to another hotel to "make more money," and I was desperate to find my boyfriend so that he could help me.
It is the first Safe Harbor bill in the nation to be named after a survivor. In addition to speaking before the Senate, I've spoken my truth at Atlanta's 14th Annual "Call to Action" Prayer Breakfast, a 2014 National Human Trafficking Awareness Day event held at Spelman College, the United Nations 59 Commission on the Status of Women, the Atlanta YWCA Salute to Women annual event, and Atlanta Hartsfield Airport in support of the Freedom of Expression Atlanta.
I was honored with the Kathie Mc Cullough Advocacy award from Youth Spark in May 2015 and was interviewed in the CNN Special Report I share this deeply personal part of my life to help prevent others from experiencing what I went through.
Whenever I asked her when we were going back to our own hotel, she just reassured me like everything was fine and totally normal. Then she called the guys whose numbers she'd collected and took me to another hotel, telling me to just follow her and not say anything.
When I got into the room, there were four guys there. I tried to leave, but she told me, "We're only going to hang out for a few minutes — DON'T leave me here by myself." She was so aggressive — just the way she looked at me was threatening; it was like, "You better not do anything or say anything unless I tell you to." All I kept thinking was that no one knew where I was and anything could happen to me. She started ordering me around and made me do sexual things with the men that nobody should ever have to do.
He texted me several times afterwards to ask me to hang out as if nothing had happened — I couldn't believe it! When I was 20, I first told a Job Corps counselor about being assaulted in South Beach, and she referred me to the Circle of Friends Learning Resource Campus Collaborative for more help figuring things out.