Increased awareness has gone in recent years to American children, who run away or are lured from home, and end up trafficked into sexual or domestic slavery. Polaris estimates that the total number of victims nationally reaches into the hundreds of thousands, when estimates of both adults and minors in labor and sex trafficking are aggregated. After The Bee's series was published, so many victims have come forward that the EOC now has to maintain a waiting list, she said. "That's why we have to bring this awareness", said Mckown. She said, "I don't have the age of the stats, but victims in the Central Valley can be as young as 5 years old, and all the way to 70". The children of Asia are among the most vulnerable in the world.
Clark said it's a big problem in cities like Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City. She said in 2005, the Federal Bureau of Investigation designated Chicago as one of the 13 locations of highest-intensity child prostitution.
Anyone who believes they have information about human trafficking is encouraged to call authorities. Probably not! Some would say that they are probably foreigners or poor people. She described South Florida as a trafficking "hotspot". "It is a local problem".
Included in the legislation is the Felony Human Trafficking Act of 2018 which would classify felony human trafficking as a violent act, ensuring that perpetrators get harsher and longer sentences.
"The traffickers gain total control over their victims' lives so that the person has no ability to separate themselves from their tormentors", said Stein, a first-term Democrat.
"What is so lucrative and attractive to these pimps is you can only sell drugs to a customer one time, but you can sell this product over and over and over again", she said.
The keynote speaker of the event was Trisha McKnight, an author and trafficking survivor from Breese. It will be followed by a panel from our partner 3 Strands Global (who provides our school prevention education), and they will share a survivor's story from someone right here in El Dorado County. Describing the extent of trafficking in Merced County, Chee said, "From April 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017, we've identified 56 victims of human trafficking". She says the thinking behind that was to get them into protective custody and get them the help and services they need while they are in jail or detention. There will be a short film about human trafficking and how it can happen in a small rural town, with a straight A student. "It has steps", McKnight said. As members of the Task Force, we are committed to finding innovative and effective ways to raise awareness about this cruel and illegal activity, prevent its occurrence, and protect and rehabilitate victims. "And what we have learned to tolerate and dismiss".
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