Due to the presence of the Super Bowl and it propensity to attract the worst in human nature, the Indiana Legislature passed tough laws against human trafficking in time for the event.
Speaking about the law State Sen. Randy Head said,
“The Super Bowl is a huge human trafficking event. They’re running sophisticated rings -- trading girls from city to city.”
The Super Bowl tend to attract various types of organized crime and different gangs. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children estimates 10,000 prostitutes were brought to Miami for the Super bowl in 2010.
Head say that Indiana will not tolerate the exploitation of women for a sporting event. he said that the law was meant to send their message to all the pimps and johns out there.
The new law extends the definition of sex trafficking and increases penalties. There are also new training recommendations for hotel employees and cab drivers. The employees can look for warning signs in possible victims. Experts say red flags include young girls, dressed inappropriately, who seem quiet, insecure and avoid eye contact. They also say it’s suspicious when this profile of a girl checks into a hotel with no luggage.
Linda Smith who is the president and founder of Shared Hope International, a non-profit which deals with the issue had nothing but praise for Governor Mitch Daniels and the legislature.
“What they did is amazing. I met with the governor less than two months ago. He met with the legislature that same week. They fast-tracked a piece of legislation to warn the traffickers – this is not a good place to do business. We’ve got a long way to go, but they made a strong first statement at a perfect time because a lot of people will now know Indianapolis is now watching. Buyers might now think twice before they buy."
Smith said that it is precisely this type of law passed at the right time that raises the issue to a national cause and gets the country thinking about exploited women and children.
“The Super Bowl -- or any large sports game -- always draws traffickers and they bring the product line because there are a lot of men that are used to buying commercial sex around these events. Unfortunately, it draws minors as a product line. People bring in kids. So what has happened in Indianapolis is absolutely amazing. The leadership standing up saying – we’re going to send a message to traffickers saying we’re not a good place for you to be bringing kids or vulnerable women to sell.”
Do you think the Indiana Legislature stepped up at the right time?