Date of Submission

Spring 5-6-2021

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Architecture

Department

Architecture

Primary Advisor

Michael Carroll

Abstract

Atlanta, Georgia is associated with being the home of CNN, The Atlanta Falcons, and Coca-Cola, but it is also one of the largest hubs for human trafficking in the United States. Every month, 7,200 men purchase sex from a minor, accounting for more than 8,000 sex acts. According to the United States Department of Justice, human trafficking is defined as the illegal act of recruiting, harboring, transporting, obtaining, or providing a person and especially a minor for sex. The 100 billion dollar industry has trapped and permanently altered the lives of nearly 5 million women and children around the world. Another study by Georgia Cares claims that more than 90 percent of domestic minor sex trafficking victims in Georgia were enrolled in school at the time of their exploitation. Crime is not exclusive to the city, according to the Schapiro Group, which researched prostitution and sexual exploitation, 65 percent of men who purchase sex with female children in metro Atlanta live in suburban areas. Young teenagers and homeless youth who commute alone are seen as easy targets and are usually approached within two days of the victim leaving home or being homeless. Of these homeless youth, 40 percent are LGBTQ, though they only make up 7 percent of the nation’s population. Homeless LGBTQ teens are being thrown out by family members and friends, and sometimes are also rejected by prejudiced shelters. The focus of this proposal is to educate and raise awareness of Atlanta’s overwhelming issue of human trafficking. My goal is to design a center for victims of sex trafficking, so they can heal and eventually reintegrated into society. Human Trafficking is an issue requiring political, social, and legislative responses. Although there are several non-profit outreach programs for victims of human trafficking, metropolitan Atlanta is lacking in its capacity to educate the community and create safe spaces for victims to recover. How can Atlanta begin to accommodate those who have been affected by the human trafficking epidemic? Due to the gravity of the situation, establishing an end to human trafficking is nearly impossible. Instead, we should be asking ourselves how we can get a better understanding of and help the victims.

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