Los Angeles County Steps Up Human Trafficking Awareness

Los Angeles officials have announced Monday that they are partnering up with community organizations in order to help bring more awareness to human trafficking. According to CBS Los Angeles, local officials want to seek Southland residents’ help in reporting human trafficking and other “suspicious activities”.

The Patch stated that the city of Los Angeles and county officials announced a partnership with five community organizations and a large law firm to raise better awareness of human trafficking. The report continued on to say that the Human Trafficking Poster Outreach Project aims to get Los Angeles businesses to “take part in the SB 1193 Anti-Human Trafficking Implementation Project, which has been in effect since last April.”

Reports state that Los Angeles Mayor, Eric Garcetti, along with Supervisor Don Knabe, City Attorney Mike Feuer and other city and county officials have been on hand to help train over 100 volunteers in the Human Trafficking Poster Outreach Project.

“On February 9, 2014, we held our first training for volunteers to conduct street outreach to ensure that businesses and establishments know about the law and put up the posters. Volunteers from throughout LA County will outreach in person to the specified businesses and establishments with print outs of the winning poster from the poster contest,” said the Project website. “The training includes Human Trafficking 101, stories from survivors, and what the outreach entails, including safety precautions and how to record business responses. NCJW/LA is funding the printing of the posters county-wide.”

According to CBS Los Angeles, as of April 1, 2013, Senate Bill 1193 requires specified businesses and other establishments to post a notice informing the public and victims of human trafficking of telephone hotline numbers to seek help or report unlawful activity.

“This issue [of human trafficking] should have the same credibility and same awareness as the war on drugs did several years ago. It is that bad, that horrific,” said Supervisor Don Knabe. He continued on to tell reporters that they are heavily targeting local massage parlors along with pushing state lawmakers to increase penalties on both Pimps and Johns.

“If you see 10-, 12-, 14-year-old girls walking in and out of massage parlors from time to time, you need to report it,” Knabe said.

CBS Los Angeles stated that according to California Attorney General Kamala Harris’ office, California is one of the nation’s top four detonation states for trafficking human. Local officials believe that with the community’s help, they could not only bring better awareness of the issue to the community, but that they can better crack down on human trafficking in Los Angeles.

[Image via Shutterstock/BladeBorge]