More Links in News & Events

Carter Center Joins Rotary as Host of World Summit on Ending Sexual Exploitation

Contact: Soyia Ellison,

ATLANTA - On May 11 and 12, The Carter Center will join with Rotarians Against Child Slavery to convene a summit of advocates, nongovernmental organizations, and senior government officials from nine countries to coordinate action to end the sexual exploitation of women and children.

Distinguished participants at The World Summit: End Sexual Exploitation 2025 are expected to include former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, Rotary International President-Elect K. R. "Ravi" Ravindran, former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, U.S. Sens. Robert Corker and Johnny Isakson, as well as representatives from law enforcement and anti-human trafficking and other advocacy groups.

Participants will share knowledge, resources, and develop real-time solutions to be tested over the next year in their communities. Summit goals include:

  • Establishment of national and international networks to compare proven results that reduce demand for sex workers
  • Development of coordinated plans to reverse trends towards exploitation
  • Mobilization of community action to strategically dismantle the sexual exploitation industry

Despite the fact that international law and the laws of 134 countries criminalize it, trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation is one of the fastest-growing criminal enterprises in the world. A 2012 International Labour Organization study found that at least 20.9 million adults and children have been bought and sold worldwide into commercial sexual servitude, forced labor, or bonded labor. And nearly 80 percent of human trafficking involves sexual exploitation, according to a United Nations study from that same year.

President Carter and the Center's Human Rights Program have provided public leadership in advancing the "Nordic model" for ending sexual exploitation, which calls for prosecuting sex buyers while providing support to help survivors exploited by the industry.

"Purchasing and profiting from sex must be condemned as a violation of fundamental human rights," said the Center's Senior Advisor for Human Rights Karin Ryan. "Ninety-nine percent of those who buy sex are men, and the vast majority of them are never punished for this abuse of another human being. Instead, society punishes those people who are being exploited. This must change."

Dave McCleary, director of the Americas Rotarians Against Child Slavery, said, "The evil that is sex trafficking hit home for me personally a few years ago when I met a young woman trafficked out of my hometown of Roswell, Georgia. This is a problem for all of us, in all communities, rich and poor, in all countries. But acting together we seek to end the human trafficking that causes so much suffering among the innocent, usually very young women, any one of whom could be our daughter."

Jimmy Carter will host the summit's concluding session, which will be webcast live on, from 2 to 4 p.m. on May 12. The press is invited to attend this session. Please RSVP by May 10. You can view a message from Carter on this issue here.

Rotary will hold a candlelight vigil at 7:30 p.m. May 12 at Centennial Olympic Park. The public is invited to attend. Visit for more information about the summit and candlelight vigil.

During the conference, you can follow the conversation on Twitter with #EndSexExploitation.


"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope."
A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.

Donate Now

Sign Up For Email

Please sign up below for important news about the work of The Carter Center and special event invitations.

Please leave this field empty
Now, we invite you to Get Involved
Back To Top