Date of Graduation

Summer 8-4-2023

Document Access

Project/Capstone - Global access

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


School of Nursing and Health Professions

First Advisor

Teri Boughton-DeBencik


Extensive research indicates that children who are victims of human and sex trafficking are at an increased risk of developing a variety of mental health illnesses and concerns. This policy analysis aims to pinpoint the deficiencies within the United States' current system and propose evidence-based interventions that can effectively mitigate the negative mental health impact of these individuals. Through a comprehensive literature review and analysis, this study establishes a strong correlation between child trafficking and mental illnesses, predominately in underserved communities. Data interpreted in this paper are collected from published studies, articles, governmental websites, and organizational pages. The proposed recommendations can guide policymakers and legislators to address this public health issue at the grass-roots level based on the identified gaps. Addressing these barriers ensures that individuals who are victims of human trafficking can receive fundamental behavioral health support that will be sustained for years to come.