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FSM Network Webinar:  Human Trafficking: The Intersection Between Child Welfare & Modern Day Slavery

The Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act (H.R. 4980), signed into law on September 29, 2014, focuses on improving outcomes for youth with foster care experience by expanding opportunities to support healthy development and promote well-being. 

The signing of this law highlights the importance of this issue as abundant research shows experience in the foster care system is linked to early pregnancy, incarceration, poor academic performance, and insufficient life skills.  A lesser known and infrequently discussed connection exists between foster care and human trafficking.  According to the Huffington Post, 60 percent of sex trafficking victims who came in contact with the FBI during 2013 were from foster care.  The circumstances of youth in foster care and obstacles faced by young adults transitioning out of the system often place them at greater risk of being targeted by traffickers.  Understanding the intersection of foster are and trafficking can help lead to increased positive outcomes for young people in and from care.

Brittany Bartkowiak graduated summa cum laude with her BSW from Eastern Michigan University and is a current MSW Candidate at the University of Michigan. As Fostering Success Michigan's Student Ambassador, Brittany is passionate about advocating for increased access to positive outcomes for students from foster care both personally and professionally. She also has experience working with individuals who have been impacted by violence and facilitates a support group for survivors of sexual assault within her community. A recipient of Michigan Campus Compact's Heart and Soul Award and Casey Family Programs' Foster Care to Success Outstanding Achievement Scholarship, Brittany's work has been featured on FSM’s website, in Michigan Youth Opportunities Initiative Newsletter, and on NPR’s State of Opportunity. Brittany has led presentations and conducted workshops both nationally and statewide. Brittany will focus on management of youth and family services in graduate school and plans to graduate with her MSW in August 2015.

For further information, please see the attached documents to the right of this page. 

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Fostering Success Michigan is a statewide initiative that aims to increase access and success in higher education and post-college careers for youth with experience in foster care. Learn how you can contribute to building a holistic network that insulates (i.e., strengthens protective factors and reduces risks) the education to career "pipeline." 

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