The purpose of this innovative pilot study was to establish an incidence rate of sexually exploited youth receiving delinquency residential or outpatient services in Arizona. The goals of this study are to better understand the scope and magnitude of the sexually exploited and sex trafficked minor population in Arizona as well as to create a better understanding of their identified treatment needs. With this information we can design systems of care to serve the domestic minor sex trafficking victims who currently receive little or no targeted treatment.
Prior to this study, most information about the number of victims in Arizona has been anecdotal. The finding of 161 sex trafficking youth currently in delinquency care in Arizona may assist in the justification of developing targeted treatments for systems involved youth. Of particular interest is that more than three quarters of the DMST clients identified in this study were also involved in the child welfare system (CPS). These findings demonstrate that there are minor sex trafficking victims in Arizona that are neither being identified nor receiving interventions they need.