2016 Equal Justice Works Fellow, Whitney Hood

Whitney Hood

Name of Host Organization: Sanctuary for Families
City, State: New York, New York
Issue area: Immigrant Populations - Trafficking/Slavery
Sponsors: Merck & Co., Inc. ; Baker & McKenzie

The Project

Provide comprehensive legal services tailored to trafficking victims with physical and psychological health concerns through direct representation, outreach to health providers and policy advocacy.

The Inspiration

Need Addressed By Project: 
New York City is a major hub for both domestic and international trafficking, and victims of trafficking are often hidden from society and from service providers. Currently, most victims access legal services only upon referral from law enforcement, usually after an arrest. A lack of training and a coordinated referral network are principle barriers to medical providers identifying trafficking and connecting patients with legal services.
The Right Person For This Project: 
Whitney is the right person for the project because:
• She has a deep personal commitment and a wealth of professional and academic experience with issues of gender-based violence
• For the past six years, Whitney has worked directly with survivors of domestic violence, forced marriage, female genital mutilation, and trafficking
• She has advocated in both domestic and international forums for improved policies and responses to gender-based violence

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