NY Law Favors Human Traffickers

And How A Comic Book is Persuading Lawmakers to Pass a Stronger Law
 
NEW YORK - May 9, 2018 - PRLog -- New York State is one of only two states in the country that require child victims of human trafficking to prove that they did not consent to being trafficked.  The other state is Alabama.  In practical terms, this means that a child victim of human trafficking has to take the stand and testify against a trafficker who abused and threatened her.  The victim is expected to publicly describe the humiliating, criminal acts forced on her in front of her exploiter who often has already threatened to kill her if she ever testifies.  Prosecutors and experts report that children are not able to testify and should not be expected to testify under these circumstances.  In NY State this results in human traffickers either pleading down to lesser chargers are receiving an acquittal.

The End Child Sex Trafficking bill is being introduced into the NY State Assembly and drops the requirement for children to prove that their trafficker forced them into the sex industry.  The bill (A 6823-B) was already passed unanimously in the NY Senate, but now is being blocked in the Assembly's Codes Committee which is impeding it's progress to the Assembly floor for a vote.

The bill's supporters at Sanctuary for Families asked comic book creator, Thomas Estler, to write a comic book that would explain to lawmakers how NY's present laws favor traffickers and endanger children.

The comic book is called COERCION and tells the story of Flora, a 15-year-old victim of human trafficking, who is preparing to testify in court against her trafficker.  As she thinks about the abuse that her trafficker inflicted on her, she begins to re-experience every slap and every cigarette burn.  As she steps to the stand to testify against her trafficker, she sees that he is holding a necklace that belongs to her infant daughter Mia, and she realizes that her daughter is in danger.  Her trafficker is still in control of her.  She cannot even open her mouth to speak, and even as she is being controlled by her trafficker, she is unable to testify to being coerced.  The court is forced to release her trafficker.

COERCION is heading to the NY State Capital on Monday, May 15, 2018 with contingent of survivors of human trafficking, persecutors, district attorneys, and NGOs.  The supporters of the bill believe that the comic book will set the bill apart from the 100,000 other bills that are introduced into the NY State legislature every year.  And while most lawmakers don't read any of the bills that cross their desk they may be willing to pick up a comic book and learn about this shocking oversight in NY State law.

The comic book can be read on http://www.abolitionista.org.

Contact
Thomas Estler
***@freedomladder.org
9176960112
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Tags:Comic Books, Human Trafficking, Legislation
Industry:Books
Location:New York City - New York - United States
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