AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) and the Laura W. Bush Institute for Women’s Health is set to host, “They are Not for Sale: Human Sex Trafficking Symposium” from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 29 at the Happy State Bank Auditorium at the Texas Tech University School of Veterinary Medicine. Attendance will also be available through Zoom.

“Health care providers need to be informed and equipped with resources and be mindful of the impact of decisions made in a clinical setting,” Angela Knapp Eggers, senior director of the Laura W. Bush Institute for Women’s Health, said. “That’s what this symposium is intended for – ensuring our clinicians and staff know what to look for and how to react and who to contact. Every victim could be depending on us!”

TTUHSC announced that Ann Ream, founder of The Voices and Faces Project, will be the keynote speaker. Other speakers include the following:

  • Teresa Baker, M.D., professor of OB/GYN at TTUHSC
  • Rachel May Anderson, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics at TTUHSC
  • Grant Permenter, Supervisory Special Agent for Crimes Against Children Special Task Force for the FBI
  • Traci Rogers, Amarillo director of No Boundaries International
  • Pamela Kirby, Psy.D., clinical psychologist
  • Louise Rice, DNP, RN, CA-CP SANE, assistant professor of nursing at TTUHSC

The event, according to TTUHSC, will give health care providers information on the care of victims and survivors of human sex trafficking along with how to use human trafficking screens to assess the risk of exploitation, how to apply trauma-informed, rights-based strategies, and how to work with patients to determine safety and health needs.

TTUHSC noted that sex trafficking victims may have PTSD, depression, and anxiety along with physical effects including unwanted pregnancy or substance abuse issues.

“It is clear that sex trafficking damages or destroys many young people’s lives,” Richard Jordan, M.D., TTUHSC School of Medicine regional dean, said. “We know we won’t solve the problem with this symposium. All of us can be important parts of the effort to rescue victims and to fight sex trafficking.”

TTUHSC reminded the community that health care providers have a critical role “through empowering their patients by offering them choices in their treatments,” and giving them the opportunity to ask questions.

Registration for the virtual symposium will be $25 and can be made here. The deadline to register is set for Oct. 21.