Patrick Kerr, PhD, an associate professor at the West Virginia University Charleston Division department of behavioral medicine and psychiatry is serving as a member of the WV Human Trafficking and Civil Rights Task Force steering committee, which develops the agenda for the statewide response to human trafficking.

Dr. Kerr is also chair of the Human Trafficking Activity Monitoring Committee for the WV Human Trafficking and Civil Rights Task Force. The committee is tasked with and is in the process of developing a statewide system for identification and monitoring human trafficking in West Virginia, as well as generating the first ever estimates of all human trafficking subtypes in our state, which will optimize anti-trafficking initiatives and measure their impact.

Affiliated with the WV Children’s Justice Center, the Human Trafficking Project is a collaboration among local, state and federal agencies, nonprofits, law enforcement agencies, interested citizens and programs to combat the commercial exploitation and trafficking of children and to support trafficking survivors. The program focuses on raising awareness of child human trafficking, connecting those working to combat the issue of child exploration and identifying comprehensive services to help children exit the commercial sex trafficking trade and to support trafficking survivors.

The center will be holding its annual conference in Charleston this week.