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Cutting-edge research, data analysis, and disruption strategies to end human trafficking in illicit massage businesses.

Featured Research

What is the Illicit Massage Industry?

The Illicit Massage Industry (IMI) is one of the largest - and most networked - sex trafficking markets in the United States. We assess the IMI as of June 2021 was made up of over 11,000 illicit massage businesses (IMBs) across all 50 states...

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Illicit Massage Industry

Prosecuting IMI Networks More Effectively

Prosecutors often face unappealing options when trying to bring illicit massage business owners to justice for their involvement in sex trafficking. Heyrick Research and Street Grace interviewed prosecutors around the country to identify underutilized means of building successful multi-charge cases against illicit massage industry networks...

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Illicit Massage Industry

Racism in the Illicit Massage Industry: The Sexual Stereotyping of Asian Women by U.S. Sex Buyers

When a shooter killed eight people at three illicit massage businesses in Atlanta in March 2021, the crimes were immediately linked to race. The shooter himself, however, claimed the crimes were not racially motivated, but were caused by his “sex addiction.” But the sexual stereotyping of Asian women in the United States is not new.

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Toolkits

Our toolkits empower citizens, community leaders and anti-human trafficking task forces and coalitions with strategic resources and promising, field-tested disruption methods to defeat the Illicit Massage Industry (IMI) and provide trauma-informed, culturally sensitive services to victims.

Law Enforcement Toolkit

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Service Providers Toolkit

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Citizen Advocates Toolkit

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Policy Toolkit

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Meet Our Team

Kathy Chen

Program Advisor
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Tami Hassett

Senior Analyst
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Carlos Garcia

Data and Analytics Manager
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Vivian Yu

Analyst and Cultural Consultant
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Brianna Norwood

Development and Operations Coordinator
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