The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) welcomes Teresa J. Helm to its team as the new Survivor Services Coordinator. Teresa will assist survivor clients seeking justice through civil litigation against major corporations who have profited from their abuse
Teresa is a lived-experience expert who survived being sexually assaulted and trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein and his network of exploiters, at the age of twenty-two. She is also a survivor of child sexual abuse. Teresa emerged from these daunting obstacles as a powerful voice, advocate, and expert in the movement for human dignity. She struggled through years of self-doubt, but eventually came to understand that speaking about her abuse helps both her and others in their healing journeys. Teresa has fought hard to bring justice to those who exploited her through Jeffrey Epstein’s network, through litigation and criminal investigations, and has ultimately become an inspiration to countless victims, families, and the community at large.
In recent years, Teresa has joined forces with various national and international organizations, law enforcement, other community leaders, and legislators. Her efforts have helped educate and prevent sex trafficking by helping others identify the signs of grooming and by equipping them with proper tools to defend, self-advocate, and fight back. Additionally, Teresa strives to provide a platform for those that may not otherwise have the opportunity to come forward and bring their story to light.Powerful Survivor-Leader @teresajhelm is joining @NCOSE as the new Survivor Services Coordinator. Teresa will assist survivor clients seeking justice through civil litigation. Thank you Teresa for your important work! Click To Tweet
As Survivor Services Coordinator with the NCOSE Law Center, Teresa will walk with survivors interested in bringing civil lawsuits against corporations and individuals who profited from and facilitated their exploitation. She will also work with survivors who partner with NCOSE to pass legislative and corporate policies that promote human dignity.
The NCOSE Law Center and Public Policy Team use the law to shift social norms to respect human dignity, punish sexual exploiters, and give justice to survivors. The Law Center has already filed nine ground-breaking lawsuits against mainstream entities who facilitate massive sexual exploitation, and will not stop until hundreds of such lawsuits are filed. Civil litigation is the most historically effective tactic to create change – for example, it was a flood of litigation that ultimately brought down the tobacco industry. Through partnering with survivors, the same can be done to bring down the sexual exploitation industry.
Given Teresa’s lived experience expertise of having herself pursued litigation against her exploiters, she is uniquely qualified to help survivors walk through the difficult but often rewarding process of civil litigation and public policy advocacy. NCOSE is committed to being guided by survivors in our work to end sexual abuse and exploitation. We know that survivors are lived-experience experts with key insights that must lead policy, advocacy, and education efforts. For these reasons, we are beyond thrilled to have Teresa join our team.
Teresa is committed to abolishing human trafficking, and aims to help facilitate the healing that is so crucial and fundamental to regaining one’s sense of self in the aftermath of sex trafficking and sexual abuse. It is with this goal in mind that Teresa looks forward to working with survivors at NCOSE.