FLITE Center West Palm Beach Officially Opens Its Doors To Help Survivors Of Human Trafficking

FLITE Center West Palm Beach (WPB) officially opened its doors with a celebratory ribbon cutting ceremony. The new location will provide survivors with a team of professionals including survivor mentors, victims service coordinators, clinicians and regional advocates that work together to provide emergency stabilization, wellness plans and ongoing support to help victims heal. They will also have access to online education (GED), employment workshops and health and wellness workshops.

FLITE Center WPB’s programming is supported by a grant from Voices for Florida’s Open Doors Outreach Network, the state’s leading trauma-informed 24/7 network for helping sex trafficked children and young adults.                    

These are some facts about the National/Florida/Palm Beach Human Trafficking Impact:

• The spread of human trafficking around the country is growing. Polaris reports that in 2020 alone, almost 11,000 situations of human trafficking were reported to the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline involving close to 17,000 individual victims.

• Florida still consistently ranks 3rd in the country for calls for suspected cases to the hotline; according to PBSO, Palm Beach County also continues to be 3rd in state for situations of human trafficking.

• According to the National Foster Youth Institute, 60 percent of all sex trafficking victims have a history in the child welfare system, making them twice as likely to be trafficked.

• For Fiscal Year 2020-2021, The Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) reported 2,289 intake cases of suspected human trafficking involving children in the state. Of these, 373 were in the southeast region of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties (77 intake cases were in Palm Beach County alone).

• Based on the State of Florida DCF data, just 5 years ago for fiscal year 2016 – 2017 where intake cases were 1,892 jumping to 2,289 in 2020 – 2021 (representing a growth of 21%), in the next 5 years the yearly number of new intake cases of suspected human trafficking in fiscal year 2027-2028 is projected to be close to 2,800.