2018-02-07 / Front Page

AG Curtis Hill speaks at U.S. Department of Justice Human Trafficking Summit

Attorney General Curtis Hill, on Friday, Feb. 2, presented thoughts on the topic of effective law enforcement at the U.S. Department of Justice Human Trafficking Summit in Washington D.C. The appearance comes less than three weeks since Attorney General Hill announced the hiring of investigators and attorneys to staff his office’s Human Trafficking Investigations Unit (HTIU).

Participating on a panel moderated by NBC’s Pete Williams, the Attorney General highlighted the need for collaboration among private- and publicsector partners to root out human trafficking, provide help to victims and prosecute to the fullest extent of the law those who are victimizing others.

“We’re working with any type of industry or business that might come in contact with those who are victims of human trafficking so that we can identify where it’s occurring,” Attorney General Hill said. “This is a very important problem -- especially when we tie it to what’s going on with our opioid crisis and the correlation between drug use and human trafficking and how all of that is a degradation of our society at large.”

The Attorney General called for wider participation among everyday citizens to help solve problems.

“It’s more than just awareness,” he said. “It’s getting people to recognize their part in this. Certainly, we need to make sure that more people recognize that they have a part to play in correcting this problem.”

Video of the summit is available online at C-SPAN’s website.

Human trafficking -- whether labor trafficking or sex trafficking -- is one of the largest and fastestgrowing criminal industries in the world, just behind the drug trade. In the United States, statistics suggest 71 percent of labor trafficking victims entered the United States on lawful visas. Further, 83 percent of sex trafficking victims are U.S. citizens. Both forms of human trafficking recruit from marginalized groups: labor trafficking from immigrant populations and sex trafficking from women and children. The typical age of children pulled into commercial sex is as young as 12 to 14. Research indicates that individuals who have been previously traumatized as children or adults are at an increased risk for re-victimization, exploitation and other manipulation.

The National Human Trafficking Resource Center can be reached at 1-888-373- 7888. The organization lists tips on its website intended to help citizens recognize possible warning signs of human trafficking so they can notify authorities anytime they believe they have spotted victims in need of aid.

Any educators or businesses interested in collaborating with the Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Investigations Unit are asked to contact Outreach Coordinator Matt Row by email at Matthew. Row@atg.in.gov.

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