JACKSON, Miss. – Human trafficking is the second fastest growing crime in the United States and it’s presence is creeping into Mississippi.
Using those facts as a backdrop, Governor Phil Bryant Thursday discussed, with more details, the scale of the problem confronting a 16-member Governor’s Task-force he created a month ago. Bryant wants the group to dismantel any trafficking operations that are found in the state.
“We will make this group the center point for fighting against human trafficking that may be present here in Mississippi,” he said. The taskforce’s expertise includes, law enforcement officers, social workers, and judges. “By bringing together the relevant individuals from around the state to take a hard look at best practices and put forth recommendations, we will draw closer to putting a stop to this terrible crime in our state.”
It’s not immediately clear how prevalent human trafficking is in Mississippi; but Sandy Middleton, Director of the Mississippi Center for Violence Prevention, said her group has taken 19 victims out from under control of human traffickers since 2013.