San Diego, Los Angeles and San Francisco make the list of thirteen places the FBI has identified as being high-intensity areas for child prostitution. Susan Brooks is with the UC Davis Center for Human Services. She says most children who are victims of sexual exploitation have been in contact with a social welfare agency at one point, be it protective services, the public health system or the education system.
“And I think all those systems coming together to really look at how we can provide the best intervention possible," she says, "and really move to a place of prevention for children and youth, I think is really going to be the solution.”
Brooks says most of the victims are between the ages of 12 and 14 and have a history of abuse or neglect. She says there’s also a high concentration of lesbian, gay and transgender children among the victims.