Hold community meetings throughout your neighbourhood. Create awareness of the issues.
A good first step to developing neighbourhood solutions is to hold a community meeting. Possible people/groups to invite to a meeting could include:
- Tenants or resident groups
- Organizations working on this issue
- Elders, or spiritual leaders
- Law enforcement officers
- Elected officials
- Local businesses
- Youth groups
- Any other groups active in your community
- Representatives from Manitoba Family Services and Housing; Manitoba Justice; or Manitoba Health.
Some possible locations could include:
- School gyms
- Community clubs
- Friendship Centres
At your meeting, create awareness that sexual exploitation through prostitution is a form of abuse, and that sexual exploitation of children is child sexual abuse. Meet with others in your neighbourhood to discuss the whole issue – the offenders, the children and adults being exploited through the sex trade, and the impact on the community. By understanding more about the offenders who drive the demand for the sex trade, neighbourhoods will be in a better position to develop effective solutions. Being knowledgeable about the issue will help the residents of your neighbourhood to develop creative solutions. Ask for ideas and help from local non-profit organizations that work with children/youth, Friendship Centres, schools, businesses, sports teams, local organizations, etc.