What is CRAY?
CRAY (Collaborative Rapid Advocacy for Youth) is a Pathfinders-led collaborative of systems-based, community-based and grassroots advocates. We are committed to increasing the capacity and coordination of advocacy services for young people experiencing commercial sexual exploitation in Milwaukee County.
CRAY provides urgent, after-hours advocacy and accompaniment for commercially sexually exploited young people, aged 11 to 25, during medical exams and law enforcement interviews.
CRAY empowers and elevates the voices of our Youth Advisory Board, a group of people with lived expertise who provide an important say in the advocacy we provide.
CRAY started in 2016 in response to the passing of Act 351, the Advocate Accompaniment Law. Act 351 ensures the right for young people to have advocates during medical exams and law enforcement interviews, and CRAY was founded to increase the capacity and coordination of advocacy services in Milwaukee. Click here to learn more about Act 351.
At the time, most advocacy programs were only available during business hours, but the need for advocates spanned all hours of the day. CRAY sought to fill that gap by providing real-time, after-hours advocacy support and urgent accompaniment services.
From the beginning, CRAY’s advocacy and collaborative efforts were informed by young people with lived expertise. Soon, youth leaders and staff developed a Youth Advisory Board to ensure young people had an important say in the advocacy we provide. With their engagement and expertise, CRAY can offer the best possible support for young people.
CRAY Collaborative Partners
Youth Advisory Board
CRAY’s Youth Advisory Board (YAB) members are young people with lived expertise ready to provide an important say in the support CRAY provides. YAB uses their expertise to train our advocates, advise how to best support young people and inform everything CRAY does.