Human trafficking is prevalent in West Michigan

HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM)- It's not just a problem in foreign countries, experts say human trafficking is happening right here in West Michigan.

It was the topic of discussion today at the "Women At Risk" conference in Holland.

The participants learned how to identify, report, and prevent sexual exploitation.

Lawmakers are now considering legislation to help fight human trafficking. State Sen. Judy Emmons, (R) Montcalm County says, "I think the number that was mentioned today was that 2,400 individuals are available at any one time in West Michigan for trafficking. Our goal is to go after perpetrators, individuals who are buying, selling and make us the strictest state against trafficking."

Human trafficking is the fastest growing branch of organized crime. Michigan ranks 13th in the United States for the number of victims in the state.

Some of the busiest times for the crimes are during major sporting events like the Olympics or the Super Bowl.


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