Norma Hotaling Awards Announced

Global Centurion, a foundation which fights human trafficking by focusing on demand, announces the Norma Hotaling Awards. Download an award application form (PDF).


Three Awards in Commemoration of Norma Hotaling

Norma Hotaling (1951-2008), founder of the SAGE, transcended homelessness, addiction and prostitution and transformed her suffering into an opportunity of hope for others. Trafficked into prostitution when she was a child, she was trapped in it for eighteen years. After she escaped, she was determined to create exit strategies for others like her. She spent the next eighteen years of her life creating a safe haven for victims of prostitution and sex trafficking. Calling attention to inequalities in the criminal justice system, she developed new policies and programs to focus on the demand side of sex trafficking. In commemoration of her passing we offer three awards which pay tribute to her legacy by recognizing individuals carrying on this important work. Together we can celebrate Norma and honor those who are carrying on her vision.

The Norma Hotaling Awards

  • Survivor-Centered Service Provider: $5,000 will be awarded to a person who demonstrates a commitment to providing survivor-centered services to sex trafficking victims here in the United States.
  • Demand Reduction: $5,000 will be awarded to a person who demonstrates innovative approaches to demand reduction, particularly working with men and boys to changes attitudes and behaviors.
  • Josephine Butler Award: $5,000 will be awarded to a person who challenges the status quo and creates new abolitionist policy or approach to sex trafficking in the United States.


Eligibility Requirements

  • Nominees must be U.S. citizens or legal U.S. residents.

  • Nominees can be male or female and must be at least 18 years of age.

  • Nominees can head or be part of an organization, but need not be.

  • Nominees must have an abolitionist approach to human trafficking.

About the Awards

Survivor-Centered Service Provider Award: The Survivor-Centered Service Provider Award shall be given to a person who has overcome hardship and life struggles similar to those of Norma Hotaling. Successful candidates will have demonstrated leadership in overcoming their own circumstances, while at the same time working to make a positive difference in the lives of others hurt by the commercial sex industry. Just like Norma Hotaling, nominees to this award must stand out for their commitment and dedication to helping victims become survivors.

Demand-Reduction Award: The Demand Reduction Award shall be given to a person focused on eradicating demand.The ultimate success or failure of the effort to end sex slavery is contingent upon our ability to effectively reduce the demand for commercial sex. A key criterion for evaluating nominees for this award will be their ability to reach today’s youth, especially young men and boys, to educate them about the harm caused by the commercial sex industry. Nominees to this award need to have a proven ability to reach young minds, and to affect cultural and attitudinal change. Nominees who have developed innovative ways to educate the general public as to how demand creates and fuels sex trafficking also will be given consideration.

Josephine Butler Award: The Josephine Butler Award shall be given to a person working to change law and policy on sex trafficking. Josephine Butler (1826-1906), a British feminist and evangelical Christian, was ahead of her time in the fight to end commercial sexual exploitation of women and children.Concerned with ensuring the welfare of women and girls trafficked into sexual servitude, she spear-headed a twenty year campaign to repeal the Contagious Diseases Acts in England and other countries.The Acts were regressive laws that degraded and further exploited those already trapped in commercial sexual exploitation. Butler also worked to make the harm of sex trafficking visible. She is best known for founding the International Abolitionist Federation, an early international anti-slavery organization. Nominees to this award will have demonstrated an ability to affect change in law and policy that clearly advances the abolition of sex trafficking.

Deadline to Apply

Please send all nomination applications before October 1, 2010. Anyone can nominate, or self-nominate, by filling out an application.All applications are considered based on the eligibility and requirements of each award. Send applications to

Click here to download the application form.

Award recipients will be announced and notified on December 17, 2010 on the memorial day of Norma Hotaling’s passing.

See also:

Media Watch: “Censored Truth”
“Other important steps are changing attitudes through education. Norma Hotaling’s school for johns is proving to help with part of that equation. The school allows first time offenders to remove the arrest from their record if they spend a day in school. These men pay approximately $500.00 to learn about the seriousness of second-offenses and sexually transmitted diseases. Most importantly, during the seminar former prostitutes tell them the truth about what it is like to be a prostitute. Out of 900 participants only three have since been arrested on similar charges. This school, which began in San Francisco, is being replicated in Toronto, Portland, Oregon and scores of other cities are considering joining them.”

Dorchen Leidholdt, “Demand and the Debate”
…what most people refer to as “prostitution” is usually domestic trafficking. The bulk of the sex industry involves pimps and other sex industry entrepreneurs controlling women and girls, often by moving them from places in which they have family and friends into locations in which they have no systems of support. Movement is also essential because customers demand novelty. In the United States, for example, there are national and regional sex industry circuits in which prostituted women and girls are rotated among cities, ensuring customers variety and sex industry entrepreneurs control…

As Norma Hotaling has demonstrated in her work to educate and deter buyers and as the Swedish government has shown in arresting buyers, while demand is essential to sex industry success it also represents the weak link in the sex industry chain. Unlike prostituted women and girls, prostitution customers do have choices to make. And when they see that choosing to buy women devastates lives and threatens their own freedom and social standing, they make different choices…

Social Work Today: “Child sex trafficking – ravaged innocence” (9/1/06, emphasis added)
According to Norma Hotaling, executive director of San Francisco-based SAGE Project, brothels are routinely staffed with children aged 12 to 16, but customers can procure them as young as the age of 5. Improved air and road travel in developed countries eases the Western sex tourist passage into the most remote “brothel villages” of southeast Asia and Central America. There, aid workers have noted increasing demand for younger and younger girls. Staff reports are replete with instances of Japanese businessmen soliciting oral sex from girls as young as age 5 and engaging in intercourse with 10-year-olds. 

“Remember,” Hotaling says, “this is a $52 billion worldwide annual industry run by organized crime. As demand increases for children, so too does the need for supply. It feeds on itself like a wildfire. 

Hotaling cites a recent Frontline (National Public Radio) broadcast that identified the world’s four major receiving countries of trafficked women. “All have legalized prostitution,” she says. Noting that child sex workers are especially prized by customers, she contends that prostitution and pornography are quintessentially antichild, antiwoman, and antisociety. 

Smith agrees. She says studies demonstrate a clear link between prostitution and pornography, and the demand for younger children. Her organization’s own investigation shows that children are featured in at least one in five online pornographic images.

Hunt Alternatives Fund: Demand Abolition
Demand Abolition supports the modern-day slavery movement by combating the demand for sex trafficking. By conducting and disseminating research, convening key stakeholders to share best practices, and educating policymakers, Demand Abolition catalyzes systemic social change to reflect the dignity of all people.