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Jackson working to prevent human trafficking

Posted at 7:10 AM, Nov 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-21 07:49:41-05

A local city is taking it a step further in the fight against human trafficking. Jackson now has a new way to try and shut traffickers down and it's requiring businesses to help.

"I think it's a good idea. I see at Walmart the missing kids and other people's signs. Sexual trafficking it's kind of a touchy subject not everybody is aware of it, or they just don't care enough," said Connor Early, Jackson resident.

Jackson just adopted two ordinances on November 13, 2018 to combat human trafficking. It will take effect on December 13, 2018.

The first one makes human trafficking a public nuisance, giving the city tools beyond law enforcement. For example, taking control of property known to be involved with trafficking.

The second requires certain establishments to hang a "human trafficking notification" poster that lists a hotline number and warning signs to look out for.

Declaring trafficking a public nuisance and hanging up these signs may not seem all that important, but the city said they will help fight human trafficking.

"Everyone knows that human trafficking is becoming a problem all over the state of Michigan. But also here in Mid-Michigan, we have lots of transportation, especially here through Jackson we have a lot of highways," said Aaron Dimick, City of Jackson Public Information Officer.

Establishments include any place with a liquor license, hospitals, urgent care centers, schools, and job recruitment centers.

"Especially if it's places with a liquor license, hospitals, where activities like that might occur. It'd be good for the public to keep their eyes out," said Rebeca Miles-Kohn, Jackson resident.

And so far people are praising the city for trying to do something about the problem.

"As a community, we all need to come together and provide those resources and that connection to help people break out of that cycle. It's a small step, it's a poster it just hangs there but if we can help one person then it is successful," said Mindy Bradish-Orta, Jackson County Chamber of Commerce.

There are consequences for businesses that don't hang the signs, it's a violation of city code. The city said it can range from being fined to getting written up, or even going to the administration hearings bureau.

Any business can hang the posters for their customers to see, just click the link below:

LINK: City of Jackson Human Trafficking Ordinances []