NC Human Trafficking Commission Meeting (May 21)

The NC Human Trafficking Commission will hold a meeting on Thursday, May 21, from 10 AM to 1 PM.  This meeting is open to the public, and it will be held at the Governor’s Crime Commission, 1201 Front Street, in downtown Raleigh.

Here is a copy of the Public Notice of Meeting on 5.21.15 from the NC Department of Justice.  For more information about the meeting, please contact Assistant Attorney General Narcisa Woods at (919) 716-6938.

Attorneys Urge Congress to Stand against Demand

On July 24, the National Association of Attorneys General publicly released a letter to Congress advocating that the Communications Decency Act be amended to grant criminal jurisdiction to state and local governments.  Part of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the Communications Decency Act regulates “obscene and indecent” material, and it criminalizes the transmission of this material to minors.

Online classified ad sites make millions of dollars each month from sex ads.  These sites have created a marketplace for prostitution; they have also unfortunately created more avenues for child sex trafficking and other sex crimes to occur.

Criminal jurisdiction of these websites is currently held by the federal government alone.  The public letter to Congress has requested the rights for state and local governments to be able to investigate classified ad websites in order to prevent aiding and abetting prostitution or other similar crimes.   Federal prosecutions have not occurred because it is difficult to establish that these sites are knowingly promoting child sex trafficking or prostitution.  Forced prostitution, child sex trafficking, and other similar crimes are state and local crimes; therefore, giving state and local governments the ability to pursue investigations may help save more victims of these crimes.

Safe Harbor Bill ratified by NC General Assembly (7/26)

Senate Bill 683, deemed the “Safe Harbor Bill” has been ratified by the General Assembly!  It has been sent to Governor Pat McCrory’s office for signature today.

The Safe Harbor Bill will protect minors who are victims of prostitution and/or human trafficking by placing them in temporary protective custody instead of through prosecution.  This law will also further penalize offenders, as mistake of age and consent of minor cannot be used as defense for prosecution.  You can read a full text of the law at the NC General Assembly’s website.

National Missing Children’s Day (MAY 25)

May 25 was first proclaimed National Missing Children’s Day by Ronald Reagan, and it has been recognized every year since 1983.

National Missing Children’s Day is dedicated to helping parents and guardians give priority to the safety and well-being of our children.  It serves as a reminder to continue efforts in reuniting missing children with their parents.

The National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) has supplied a Missing Children Special Feature online resource for National Missing Children’s Day.  Take a few minutes to visit this link, and you will gain valuable knowledge about AMBER alerts, publications for families and law enforcement, and general statistics.

Established in 1972, the National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) is a federally funded resource offering justice and drug-related information to support research, policy, and program development worldwide.

 

The North Carolina General Assembly is also doing its part to help increase the safety of children in our state.

HB 149, also known as “Caylee’s Law,”  was passed and Governor Pat McCrory signed it into law on May 17, 2013.  “Caylee’s Law” will speed the rescue of missing children by requiring mandatory reporting of missing children after 24 hours.