It’s not easy being a child in Texas

I’ve got some national ranks for you for the great state of Texas regarding our children.
The ranking of Texas in matters concerning children:
  • Texas is #49 in verbal SAT scores in the nation (493) and #46 in average math SAT scores (502).
  • Texas is #36 in the nation in high school graduation rates (68%).
  • Texas was the only state in the nation to cut average per pupil expenditures in fiscal year 2005, resulting in a ranking of #40 nationally; down from #25 in fiscal year 1999.

Child Impact ñ 2,225,182 children ages 0-6 years reside in Texas of which 53% or 1,175,768 are as classified low-income (income below 200% of the federal poverty level) and 26% (588,824) are classified as poor (income below federal poverty level) as reported in the 2006 U.S. Current Population Survey.

That’s 79% below the federal poverty level, dear readers. The majority of those are extremely poor.

Medical Care – Texas ranks 51st in low-income parents and children without insurance among the 50 state and District of Columbia with the least desirable ranked 51st. Texas ranks 49th in Head Start coverage.

The teen birth rate is the highest in the nation (63 births per 1,000 females ages 15-19) according to 2007 Kid Count Data Book. (That means it is lowest in the nation for programs to help prevent teen age pregnancy.)

You are probably asking by now, “Can’t Attic Annie find anything about children in Texas where they rank nationally near the top?”

The answer is yes!

Texas state law allows minors to be charged with prostitution instead of being provided services, treatment and protection from adult predators.

Recently a 13 year old girl (B.W.) was arrested and convicted of prostitution in Harris County while her 32 year old pimp walked free.

DALLAS — … human traffickers have turned Texas into a hub for international and domestic forced labor and prostitution rings,

●   Texas and the Southwest border continue to serve as the biggest point of illegal entry into the U.S., largely because traffickers are able to get aliens across without documents1.   The major points of entry into the United States are located in southern (Houston) and central Texas, Southern California, Tucson, Arizona, and areas of New Mexico. While the Southwest border is often used as the main portal into the United States, the emerging ports of entry in the region include Atlanta, Houston, Orlando and Washington D.C.2

●  Like many other states, Texas has and continues to experience incidents of human trafficking in forms of forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation.  Three main factors contribute to trafficking in Texas and Houston:  proximity, demographics, large migrant labor force.  Houston’s proximity to the Mexican border and I-10, along with its port, make it a popular point of entry for international trafficking.

●  At the Department of Justice Human Trafficking Conference, the I-10 corridor was identified as one of the main routes for human traffickers in the United States.

Texas is considered a major destination for victims of domestic and international human trafficking. In 2008, 38 percent of all calls to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hot line were dialed in Texas, according to statistics.

U.S. Department of Justice, the average age of entry into prostitution in the U.S. is 12 to 14 years old — barely past the age of puberty. (That’s the average age!)

On a recent television newscast, a woman by the name of Kim was portrayed as working in Dallas with the police to help rescue the young girls.She immediately reminded me of Somaly Mam, a woman I blogged about a few weeks ago doing the same thing in Southeast Asia.

I am so grateful that people in Texas are beginning to realize these young girls and boys need to be rescued and not prosecuted. Something is being done in Texas to address this problem.

Child sex trafficking is a huge problem in the State of Texas. Thank goodness people are beginning to address the issue. With Texas’ size, one can only imagine how many organizations need to form and interact with each other in every major city to stem this problem. Of all the sex slaves brought to Texas, 2 out of every 10 are children. That translates into numbers of children too large to even comprehend.

Fort Worth and surrounding areas are also responding to the problem. My information is oral repeated in a class. I have no reference at this point. A major problem that FW is having now is they are rescuing these children with no place to house them while they teach them survival and living skills. This step must be taken to insure the children are not forced back into the streets.

Hopefully, Texas will soon, at least in this area of concern, become the model for having the highest rate of shutting this despicable practice of child sex trafficking down for good. Then we can put more effort into all the other areas of concern which affect our state’s children.

Namaste. Attic Annie


Comments Off on It’s not easy being a child in Texas

Filed under childhood, diary, economics, education, general topics, life, relationships, Uncategorized

Comments are closed.