Published: Tuesday, September 11, 2012
California residents will soon have the unique opportunity to vote for a very important legislative initiative on Nov. 6 designed to curtail sexual predators and shine a bright light on the shadowy world of criminal traffickers. The goal of this “Californians Against Sexual Exploitation (CASE) Act” (known as Proposition 35) is to dole out tougher penalties for convicted offenders involved in sexual crimes.
Published: Thursday, Sep. 20, 2012 – 8:09 am
Re “Citizens take the initiative” (Page A1, Sept. 10): Some people who oppose Proposition 35 contend that creating tougher laws against human trafficking, forced labor and sexual coercion belongs with the legislature.
Daphne Phung of California Against Slavery and Chris Kelly of the Safer California Foundation were both disappointed in their attempts to get the legislature interested in strengthening those laws, so they took action with Prop 35.
This is the 150th year of the Emancipation Proclamation. Recently, I read what opponents of the Proclamation said back in 1862. They are quite interesting to read on this side of history. Some opponents argued: It didn’t free slaves in areas controlled by the Union; it would prolong the war by enraging the South even more; it would incite slaves to extreme violence against white Southerners. Today, we know that passing the Emancipation Proclamation was the right thing to do, and a pivotal point in our history. It led to the 13th Amendment to abolish slavery two years later.
Prop 35 has garnered enormous, and ever increasing, support from people and organizations throughout the state and nation. Prop 35 really is a no-brainer initiative. And Prop 35 is urgently needed to stop modern slavery in California.
The Prop 35 text is carefully drafted following the federal law and is co-authored by 23-veteran prosecutor and nationally recognized human trafficking expert, Sharmin Bock. Get the real scoop on Prop 35 from the horse’s mouth here.
But no matter what one does, there’s bound to be criticisms. While this is expected, I also believe in keeping people accountable to the factual accuracies of the statements made publicly to voters. First, voters deserve to get accurate information. More importantly, we have real lives at stake.
Recently, one op-ed was posted in the San Jose Mercury that is plagued by factually and legally inaccurate statements. I feel compelled to respond although I usually don’t respond to articles.
As a prosecutor who has spent over a decade fighting human trafficking, I’ve seen the terrible human toll of sex trafficking in California. Every day, women and children are forced to sell their bodies, on the streets and online, for the financial gain of human traffickers.
I have helped to create and lead the first of its kind unit in the nation dedicated to recovering sexually exploited children and prosecuting those who profit from selling them. Since 2006, this unit has prosecuted over 200 sex traffickers and supported the rescue of hundreds of children, some as young as 11 years old.
Your Turn: Must pass the CASE Act (Prop 35) to fight human trafficking in California
by District Attorney Nancy O’Malley (Op-ed published in Contra Costa Times on June 30, 2012)
In 2010, a 13-year-old girl from San Francisco came across the Bay Bridge to Oakland. She thought that she was visiting friends, but one of these so-called friends put her in the clutches of a human trafficker.
As the world turns, there are many things to debate about: from the food that is grown for our tables, to the computers that run mega companies. But in the menagerie of things, a true cause has arisen: Proposition 35 (or Californians Against Sexual Exploitation or CASE Act).
California needs Prop 35 to pass. It gives strength to the existing laws that govern sexual trafficking and exploitation of minors and adults.
Article by Elizabeth Chin, California Against Slavery Intern
I founded a Free the Slaves chapter at my high school two years ago after watching a life-changing documentary about human trafficking. These past two years, our chapter has tried to raise money and awareness to help end slavery with our fair trade bracelet and cultural-talent show fundraisers.
This summer, I wanted to change government policy to protect victims of human trafficking in the California and to join the “Targeted Change” mission for Free the Slaves. I was shocked to learn that many victims in the sex industry who are US citizens do not have the same rights or protection as international victims,
(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).