Central Coast leaders hold forum to discuss solutions to human trafficking

Posted at 8:21 PM, Apr 20, 2018

Local public safety leaders held a forum to raise awareness around the presence of human trafficking along the Central Coast.

During Friday’s discussion in Santa Maria, officials explained that pimps brainwash young girls and boys into a life of sex work in motels. They also say that runaways and foster children are often targets.

Santa Maria police officers say they have recently taken action to provide victims of human trafficking with resources.

The Polaris Project aims to teach parents or other adults the signs of human trafficking, among other goals.

"I believe it is the moral issue of our time," said Assemblyman Jordan (R-San Luis Obispo), who has proposed legislation to address the issue. "It really is modern-day slavery."

Leaders say human trafficking is a $140 billion industry worldwide.