It is a reality that's difficult for most Iowans to admit. Sex trafficking doesn't just happen in other countries, huge American cities, or large metropolitan areas. No, it happens right here in Iowa and a new documentary will expose it.

The trailer for the documentary, Gridshock, was released this week and includes three sex trafficking survivors, sharing the nightmares they endured. It's hard to watch and includes this unthinkable quote:

You can sell a human hundreds, if not thousands, of times. You can only sell drugs a couple times.

During an appearance in Cedar Rapids this spring Vanessa McNeal, the director of the documentary, spoke of specific atrocities. A central Iowa father selling his daughter for sex before she was in kindergarten. It would continue until she was a teenager. It's not the only story she shares in the video below, where she also discusses the amount of money involved in this crime.

So how can you help prevent someone from preying on your child? It's important to understand that more than half of those who are exploited meet their sex trafficker online.

Just last month, 24 people were arrested on the east coast. The alleged child predators include a firefighter, nurse, and police sergeant (post below). We have to work together to stop this insanity. Thank you to the makers of the documentary for their work to increase awareness. Knowledge is power.

The documentary has been submitted for consideration to the Sundance Film Festival. It will premiere at the Civic Center in Des Moines on April 2, 2019. We'll be sure to let you know when other Iowa showings are scheduled.

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