Former deputy district attorney and professor at Portland State University Christopher Carey spoke about how he used math and science to combat human trafficking on Friday in Anna Pechanec Hall.
“Trafficking is a multi-process problem,” Carey said prior to the event. “It has to be considered a health issue, a science issue, a social issue and a wellness issue.”
According to Carey’s research, the average age of trafficked children is 15, with most being African-American and female.
Carey’s research also found that many foster kids who had fallen victim to trafficking had been in at least three foster homes beforehand, and that some trafficking is linked to gang activity.
A four-year study by the U.S. Attorney’s Office uncovered 169 child trafficking incidents in the Portland region.
“We know it’s prevalent,” Carey said. “We know that it’s hard to get a count on. But stories are popping up every week, so it’s definitely a relevant issue in this region.”