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Human trafficking is the use of a person for forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation. It is estimated by the Ohio Attorney General’s office that 1,000 Ohio youth are human trafficked every year and an additional 3,000 youth are at high risk to be trafficked. Human trafficking is not only an international problem; unfortunately, it occurs locally in Summit County and throughout the state. Through manipulation and coercion, many youths do not recognize themselves as victims. Human trafficking may look different than how it is portrayed in media and online, as many youths are trafficked out of their own homes and neighborhoods. Through the leadership of Judge Linda Tucci Teodosio, Summit County Juvenile Court runs a specialized court docket in effort to protect and stabilize youth in the community.

The mission of Restore Court is to empower youth involved with human trafficking and those who are at high risk, to achieve successful lives by providing appropriate support. This is accomplished in a variety of ways emphasizing the importance of wrap-around-services for holistic help.

  • Mentoring - Through Rahab Ministries in Akron, each youth in the program is paired with a mentor. This person builds a positive relationship with the youth through fun activities and outings, including the community center, That Place.
  • Counseling - Partnering with agencies in the community, each participant engages in trauma-informed therapy with counselors who are educated on human trafficking.
  • Case Management - Each youth and family in the program is paired with a case worker to help link them to community resources and offer other case management services.
  • Supervision & Accountability - Depending on the case, youth will be assigned intensive probationary supervision or will be monitored by a court intake worker.

 Program Tracks

  • Safe Harbor Track - According to Ohio law, if a participant meets certain legal criteria, s/he may have the charge(s) dismissed and immediately expunged upon graduation from the program.
  • Traditional Track - For those involved with human trafficking or at high risk, but who do not meet the criteria for the Safe Harbor statute.

Participants set goals unique to their situation, and may graduate the program based on demonstrated ability and responsibility at home, school, and in the community with adherence to all Restore Court guidelines.

Learn More Here

Information on human trafficking specific to Ohio

Summit County Collaborative Against Human Trafficking resource guide

Parent hand out

Restore Court brochure

Restore Court in local newspaper