NEWS AND ISSUES

SPECIAL REPORT: Sex trafficking survivor shares her story

June 25, 2013

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Withelma “T” Ortiz Walker Pettigrew hasn’t had an easy life. Forced into sex slavery at 10 years old after bouncing between foster homes, she finally escaped at 17 when an advocate helped her to get out and realize her potential. In a SiriusXM Stars special report, Ortiz, now 23, talked to journalist Perri Peltz about her childhood in sex slavery and her new life as an advocate against sex trafficking in the United States. She shared stories about torture she faced at the hands of her exploiter and the moment she realized she deserved better. “I didn’t know I could be anybody different,” she said. “I realized I was a human being.”