Whether engaging in prostitution is by force or by choice, the criminal record these individuals obtain for committing the commercial sex act stays with them.

Julie Hatfield, a woman with a street walker’s past, provides her testimony of being trafficked—and the criminal records which followed. For five years, she remained free from sex trafficking, yet tainted by a record that diminished her hope of ever truly being clean and free. Now, thanks to Gov. John Kasich, trafficking victims have a chance at a “literal clean slate”.

Since Hatfield met the criteria for a trafficking victim, her convictions were expunged by Judge Paul Herbert and she was set free. As a result, Ms. Hatfield says, “there really is hope…you don’t have to live that way anymore.”