Minnesota authorities and nonprofit organizations are taking action to stop the thriving criminal sexual enterprise that has taken hold of the state. These new efforts are intended to increase programs focused on “keeping teens out of the sex trade” and stopping and preventing prostitution customers, stated an article for Star Tribune.
This new push is said to correlate with the increased attention Minneapolis will receive as the host of Super Bowl 2018. The annual U.S. event attracts thousands of wealthy visitors each year and, according to experts, “likely a small surge in sex trafficking.” A University of Minnesota’s Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center researcher said that the Super Bowl reportedly “correlates with a rise in commercial sex ads.”
The plan is set to include coordinated stings, as well as training in identifying victims for bus drivers, hotel workers, and over 10,000 Super Bowl volunteers.
The goal of the new courses of action is to focus more on prevention before police intervention is made necessary. Previous methods used against sex trafficking over the years have included “toughening prison sentences for pimps and overhauling how the state treats sex trafficking victims,” reported Star Tribune.
The Super Bowl plan led by the anti-sex-trafficking committee is set to work together with the Women’s Foundation’s second phase of “Minnesota Girls Are Not For Sale,” a campaign aimed at lowering the demand for sex-traffic victims by education prostitution customers on the realities of the criminal sexual enterprise, began in 2011.
Ramsey County Attorney and leader of a Super Bowl anti-sex-trafficking committee John Choi said, “The demand is there constantly. This happens every day, every hour, every second of the day.” Law enforcement agencies and nonprofit groups are working together to use the Super Bowl’s international audience of over 100 million people each year to bring, “fresh urgency and funding to anti-sex-trafficking initiatives.”
A university study reported that the average buyer “typically travel 30 to 60 miles for sex, often before or after work, or while on business trips or male-focused vacations like hunting trips.”
National studies report that within the past year, 26,000 Minnesota men “may have bought sex.”
Star Tribune reported that the timing of these new preventative programs is already being moved around so that the planned stings, increased public awareness campaigns, and prevention programs will benefit from the increase in attention the state will receive from the big show.
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