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Evaluation Report of Survivor Advocates in Healthcare Program

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 2023
145 pages

This document reports on the methodology and results of a program aimed at ensuring that trafficked persons are identified in the healthcare setting and are helped with victim-centered, trauma-informed care and services.


The project discussed in this report was an expansion of a 2018 pilot study that explored the efficacy of using human trafficking survivors as advocates to aid hospital patients who are experiencing human trafficking. The project aimed to take advantage of the unexplored potential for human trafficking survivors to act as advocates in direct service provision, noting those individuals’ unique and valuable experience and insights to anti-trafficking efforts for healthcare providers and trafficked persons. Research methodology consisted of a mixed methods evaluation that explored responses of staff working with survivor advocates, using quantitative and qualitative data that were collected from hospital and community-based organizations (CBO) personnel. Additional data was collected from survivor advocates, about patients served through the program. The authors conclude that the inclusion of survivor advocates in hospitals appeared to have been well-received by hospital staff, and their value to the anti-trafficking movement was well-recognized by CBO colleagues. Qualitative analyses identified three main themes: survivor advocates were quick to be recognized and valued as an important resource for staff; the Survivor Advocate program made a significant organizational impact on training and staff attitudes towards patients; and the challenges that arose over the course of the program revealed a need to explore how to better empower Survivor Advocates and integrate their input into decision-making.

Date Published: April 1, 2023