Archive for Thursday, November 29, 2012

State agency working on sex trafficking bill

November 29, 2012, 10:22 a.m. Updated November 29, 2012, 11:18 a.m.


— The Kansas Department of Children and Families is working with law enforcement officials on legislation that would increase penalties for those who engage in sex trafficking of children, while also providing help for the victims, an agency official said Wednesday.

The department is working with Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt's office, law enforcement agencies and judges, Anna Pilato, DCF's deputy secretary for strategic development, faith-based and community initiatives, told Wichita child-service providers.

The legislation will treat children in the sex trade as victims rather than criminals, she said. The DCF's role would be to help those children get the help they need to re-enter society.

A bill to address sex-trafficking of minors passed unanimously in the Senate during the last legislative session but stalled in the House of Representatives, The Wichita Eagle reported.

National researchers estimate that about 200,000 girls and boys nationwide are involved in sex trafficking or at risk, said Lucy Bloom, a special assistant with DCF, which is working to determine the scope of the problem in Kansas.

Diana Schunn, executive director of the Child Advocacy Center of Sedgwick County, said a big part of solving the problem will be persuading people that youth prostitutes "are as important as any other child abuse we work with." And she said it's possibly more important to deal with the adults who drive the sex trade.

It's a lucrative business for the procurers because a pimp "can sell a girl over and over again in one evening," she said, and many people are willing to pay a lot of money to have sex with children.

"If demand wasn't there, we wouldn't be seeing these victims," she said.

In another meeting Wednesday, DCF Secretary Phyllis Gilmore told Wichita, Sedgwick County and law-enforcement officials that her department also is drafting proposed legislation that would require notification to the department when a parent who is behind on child support payments receives financial benefits from an insurance company or the workers' compensation system.

Gilmore said if the department knew of the payments, it could issue liens to ensure that child-support payments are made.


somedude20 1 year, 4 months ago

Can't they just put up a sex traffic light or a sex stop sign to help slow the sex trafficking?


hipper_than_hip 1 year, 4 months ago

I've got an idea: execute anyone found involved in child sex trafficing.


James Nelson 1 year, 4 months ago

The point some are making is that maybe there is no such problem here in Kansas and we would be wasting our time and money frittering about it in Topeka just to make the governor look good to his base. I say show us the extent of the Kansas problem and then let us, not one man, decide if the Kansas problem warrants action. Never should a self-professed do-gooder gain points promoting anything not needed.

I strongly suggest that until Ms. Bloom with the DCF finishes her study and a determination is actually made that we have a problem in Kansas that everyone back off efforts just yet to fix a non-problem.


KansasLiberal 1 year, 4 months ago

The update to this article is nothing but baseless propaganda. There is no actual data to back up what these "child safety" advocates claim.

"National researchers estimate that about 200,000 girls and boys nationwide are involved in sex trafficking or at risk, said Lucy Bloom, a special assistant with DCF, which is working to determine the scope of the problem in Kansas."

Variants of that 200,000 number have been floating around for over a decade, and it's all based on a misinterpretation of flawed research.

"The “300,000 trafficked children” fantasy grew by exactly such misquotes. Its original source was a 2001 study by Richard Estes and Neil Weiner of the University of Pennsylvania which guesstimated (by questionable methodology) that “as many as 100,000-300,000 children and youth [of both sexes] are at risk for sexual exploitation” of one kind or another. Note that even if we accept the shaky methodology, this guess is for BOTH sexes, for “children and youth” (not just children), and most importantly represents those at risk of some form of “exploitation”, not currently involved in one specific form (sex trafficking). The paper is very revealing; if you peruse it you will see that Estes and Weiner rank types of “exploitation” by frequency, and that domestic and international “sex trafficking” are second and third from the bottom. Even these highly biased and excitable gentlemen believed that “sex trafficking” affected only a tiny part of their “youth at risk”. The categories are, in order from most common to least common, sexual molestation by acquaintances, sexual molestation by family members, pornography (including, apparently, just looking at porn), gay sex, stripping, sexual contributions by girls to gangs, pimped prostitution (for girls) and entrepreneurial prostitution (for boys)."


Agnostick 1 year, 4 months ago

This is the kind of cutting-edge economic development initiative that should send the Kansas economy skyrocketing into the stratosphere! #heblowsalot


Paul R Getto 1 year, 4 months ago

Good idea, perhaps, but it is already illegal. Brownie's working on his compassion score to try and make for abusing the disabled. Will his businessman jesus care?


bearded_gnome 1 year, 4 months ago

not sure that new laws will make much difference, should instead increase the financial pain, especially for the "johns." not just the pimps.

and for kslib and observer, just kep sticking your heades in the sand, keep telling yourselves there's no problem. that's right, keep telling youselves, keep telling yourselves, do it a lot, evry day. maybe you can really change reality ... not.


oldbaldguy 1 year, 4 months ago

this is a problem, not sure we need more laws on the books about it.


observant 1 year, 4 months ago

Sounds like brownie's latest job creation idea for those employed in the trade.


KansasLiberal 1 year, 4 months ago

I wish that I could get paid to fight against non-existent problems. Maybe I should submit a bid to the government to fight against illegal alien grizzly bears molesting preteen children. That's bound to get me at least a few hundred thousand dollars a year for a few years before someone figures it out.


Commenting has been disabled for this item.