Social workers and city police are drawing on students’ creativity to address the growing problem of sexually exploited adolescents in Ottawa.
A committee of police, the Children’s Aid Society and the Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa yesterday unveiled a student-designed poster as part of its community awareness campaign on the issue of sexually exploited adolescents.
“(Sexual exploitation) is going on in our community,” said Deputy Chief Sue O’Sullivan, at the Canterbury High School event.
Police say sexual exploitation is an issue that officers and youth workers are seeing more frequently.
“We recognize that it’s a significant problem for a select population of youth,” said Ottawa Police Sgt. Mark Houldsworth.
“How we’re going to beat this is by working together,” O’Sullivan said. “These messages are written for youth by youth and there’s nothing more powerful than peer to peer.”
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“I think the issues surrounding youth are best addressed by youth,” agreed Jordana Globerman, whose poster design, which has important contact numbers at the bottom, was chosen. “We have a responsibility to help each other.”