New York’s Human Trafficking Intervention Courts


In fall 2013 the State of New York Unified Court System announced the Human Trafficking Intervention Courts, an initiative that according to a press release “seeks to promote a just and compassionate resolution to cases involving those charged with prostitution─treating these defendants as trafficking victims, likely to be in dire need of medical treatment and other critical services.”

In 2014 Red Umbrella Project staff and members conducted an observational study,  documenting the Human Trafficking Intervention Courts in Brooklyn and Queens to figure out what happens in the court rooms and how they handle prostitution related charges. The HTICs have the goal of reframing people as victims instead of criminals.

RedUP released the first sex worker-led report on the HTICs on October 1, 2014 at an event at Long Island University. On September 18, 2015 we took it to City Hall, with a rally and member testimony during a City Council oversight hearing about the courts.

Human Trafficking Intervention Courts Rally and City Council Hearing - September 18, 2015

To join the conversation online – use the hashtag #NYHTIC and find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram as @redupnyc



Report Credits

Authors: Audacia Ray and Emma Caterine
Court Observation Team Leader: Emma Caterine
Court Observers: Audacia Ray, Ariel Wolf, Emma Caterine, Karen Gardiner, Kate Zen, Lindsay Roth, Olivia, rosza daniel lang/levitsky, Sarah Elspeth Patterson, Sur Madam, Tammy S. Baiko, Theener Nix
Community Organizers: Ariel Wolf and Balder Rosado
Research Support/Allies: Martin Elio Covarrubias, Samira Ali, Savitri Horrigan
Statistical Analysis: Sarah Elspeth Patterson of Persist Health Project
Graphic Designer: Shawn Tamaribuchi
Copy Editor: Rachel Aimee

Download the report as a PDF

You can download the two page executive summary here.

You can download the full color PDF report here.