This document is a guide for the implementation and assessment of specialized units for children and youth experiencing commercial sexual exploitation in Los Angeles County’s Department of Children and Family Services and the Probation Department.
This guide’s function is to provide jurisdictions with guidance in developing similar specialized units to the one in Los Angeles County for children and youth experiencing commercial sexual exploitation (CSE). The authors of this guide include an overview of the practice and policy context of those specialized units and detailed descriptions of program activities of those units. The authors’ goal was to provide the tools to determine whether a program is ready to be evaluated; whether the program model is specified clearly enough to identify the hypothesized mechanisms of change, whether program activities and outcomes are clearly defined, and whether there is capacity to collect such data within the agency. The sections of the guide present the following topics: the policy and practice context of the specialized units; the cultural, historical, and gender context of CSE; Los Angeles County Probation Department’s Child Trafficking Unit; Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) specialized units for child trafficking, models and descriptions; and implementation fidelity, a measurement plan for the Los Angeles County Probation Department’s child trafficking unit.