Prop 35: Join Our Fight against Human Trafficking

Posted by daphne | Posted in Awareness, Education, Human Trafficking, Initiative, Law Enforcement, News, Sex Trafficking | Posted on August 28, 2012

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(This article was on the cover of the PORAC magazine in April 2012. Click here to see actual article.)

By Chris Kelly, Founder of the Safer California Foundation & former Facebook Chief Privacy Officer.

We share a dedication to public safety and to protecting the lives of those who are the most vulnerable in our community.  We also share a common belief that tougher laws in California are needed to fight human trafficking, online predators, and sexual slavery.

That’s why I’m asking for your support Prop 35 (Californians Against Sexual Exploitation or CASE Act).

On the November 2012 ballot, Prop 35 will update California’s laws to confront the growing and underreported problem of human trafficking and sexual exploitation of women and children within the state.

This initiative will increase penalties against human traffickers, require human traffickers to pay for services for their victims, require convicted sex traffickers to register as sex offenders, and require all registered sex offenders to disclose their internet accounts.

By strengthening these laws, the law enforcement community will be able to better crack down on these horrific crimes.

We are proud to count many law enforcement organizations – including PORAC – among our endorsers.

Today we ask you to join us by visiting www.VoteYesOn35.com and by adding your name to our growing list of endorsers.

It’s time for the people of California to take a stand for tougher laws and stronger enforcement to fight human trafficking, sexual exploitation, and sexual predators.

In California, thousands of vulnerable women and young girls are held against their wills and forced to sell their bodies. The victims are often girls as young as 12 who are sexually exploited for the financial gain of human traffickers.  They are afraid for their lives and abused – sexually, physically and mentally.

Human trafficking is said be one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises in the world – and, as many of you know from protecting our communities – it is taking place right here in our own backyard.

California has three metropolitan areas that the FBI has identified as among the highest child prostitution areas in the nation. The state also recently received an “F” grade on laws to protect children against sex trafficking.

It’s clear that California’s current laws do not provide many of you in law enforcement with all of the tools needed to confront the problem.  We can do better and you can help us change things today by supporting Prop 35.

That’s why we are asking for you to help raise awareness of this important initiative.  Join us today by visiting www.VoteYesOn35.com and adding your name to our list of endorsers.  Then spread the word to your family, friends, and colleagues.  Help us pass this ballot initiative in November.

Prop 35 will also take the fight against human trafficking to the internet, taking a stand against sex offenders who are lurking in the digital shadows online.

I’ve seen firsthand the explosion in the use of the internet to identify and traffic women and children from the time I spent as Chief Privacy Officer at Facebook.  I have worked with many of you on commonsense reforms in the Legislature and now we want to go one step further.

Prop 35 will update Megan’s Law and require that all registered sex offenders disclose their online accounts.  Our children will be safer online when sex offenders disclose their email addresses, instant messenger names, and Twitter and Facebook information.

At the kickoff event for Prop 35 campaign, I listened to Leah Albright-Byrd, a human trafficking survivor, speak about her personal experiences.  When Leah talks about what she endured, she asks each of us to imagine being 11 years old and having your body used and abused for the sake of someone else’s monetary gain.

You and I know that no one should have to endure this brutality, especially not a child. That’s why we need to pass Prop 35 in November.

By voting yes on Prop 35, Californians will make a statement that we will not tolerate the sexual abuse of our children and that we stand with the victims of these horrible crimes. Join us in this fight today by visiting www.VoteYesOn35.com.

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