Local law enforcement officials say that unless steps are taken, Philadelphia is poised to become a major hub of human trafficking, in which victims are essentially sold for sexual purposes or other forms of involuntary servitude.
Assistant district attorney Shea Rhodes told City Council member,
“In fact, Philadelphia — with its international airport, bus and train stations, busy harbor, and intersections with major national highways — is poised to become a major hub of human trafficking. And that is why preventative efforts, such as this hearing, are so important.” Those preventive efforts, include better training — not just of police, but also of first responders such as emergency room workers and teachers, so victims of trafficking can be identified more readily.
Hugh Organ of Covenant House agreed that better identification of trafficking victims is needed, but he added that law enforcement and social service agencies also need to see them as victims rather than as criminals.
Learn more at Mike Dunn’s CBS Philly article: Philadelphia Officials Probing Problem Of Human Trafficking Here.