The sex trade will be the focus of a conference today (FRI) for community and social services workers.
Speakers with Sex Trade 101 will talk about their experiences on the streets and in prostitution.
One speaker, Bridget Perrier will share her story of being forced into the sex trade as a 12 year old aboriginal girl.
By the time she was 16, she gave birth to her first son, who was diagnosed with leukemia.
Perrier says she was so deep in the trade, and addicted to drugs, that she was unfit to be a mother and her son, Tanner, died at the age of five.
She got out of prison three days before his death, and he made her "pinky-swear" to quit prostitution.
It was a struggle for her to clean her life up, but Perrier felt like she'd been given a second chance and with the birth of her daughter decided she didn't want the cycle to continue.
Perrier graduated from George Brown College and now works as a social worker. She is also doing pre-law programs in hopes of getting into law school.
Perrier was also recognized as a YWCA Woman of Distinction.
She has three children -- including an adopted 17 year old girl, Angel Wolfe, who will also speak at the conference.
Angel's mother, Brenda, was a sex trade worker in Vancouver, and murdered by serial killer Robert Picton.
Perrier says it's important to reach out to the community and let people know that this does happen in Canada, and she hopes to prevent even one girl from getting involved in the trade.
A special conference will be held for mental health and addictions workers, law enforcement, corrections and other health care and community care providers at 9 AM at Grey Roots Museum.
There will also be two forums open to the public -- Friday at 7 PM at the Alliance Church in Owen Sound, and Saturday at Sauble Christian Fellowship in Sauble Beach at 7 PM.