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    Sexual Violence
    Battle Creek Enquirer

    B-SAFE offers alternative to life of drugs and prostitution

    Women caught in a world of drugs and prostitution seldom hold much hope for a better life. They often are enslaved by their addictions, selling their bodies for survival.If they are arrested, it usually means a quick trip through the legal system and then back out on the street. It is a vicious cycle that wastes lives and erodes communities.In an attempt to address some of the underlying causes of prostitution, Calhoun County has launche pilot program called B-SAFE (Beat Sexual solicitation And Forbid Exploitation) as an alternative to traditionally sentencing. B-SAFE is run through the county's Drug Court, which was created to help those convicted of nonviolent drug crimes.If a woman is arrested for a prostitution-related crime and deemed a good candidate for B-SAFE, she can plead guilty and have her sentencing put on hold for six months. She then must enter the B-SAFE program, which will help her get assistance for drug and sexual addictions, as well as provide art therapy and classes in health, healthy relationships, self-esteem and forgiveness. Participants also must enroll in a 12-step prostitution recovery program.If, at the end of six months, the woman completes the program, the charges she faces may either be reduced or dismissed. The goal, of course, is that the charges are dismissed and the woman is ready to build a new, healthy life for herself.The main advantage of the B-SAFE program is that is offers women an opportunity to turn their lives around and shun drugs and prostitution for a more productive lifestyle. If it proves successful, it also will help ease the burden on our courts and help those neighborhoods that are battling prostitution and the related problems it often brings.B-SAFE, however, cannot force anyone to change. A woman who participates in the program only to avoid serving jail time is unlikely to benefit long-term from the services she will be offered through B-SAFE. Like all recovery efforts, an individual must first want to stop the addictive behaviors that have sent his or her life into a downward spiral before they can be helped.We hope that through the B-SAFE program, women who have turned to prostitution for survival will see the opportunity that is being provide to them and will take full advantage of it. Not only will their lives be far better because of it, but their families, friends and the entire community will benefit as well.

    Associated Topics

    OtherPorn, Prostitution, Sex Industry

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