Press release from State Senators Pam Althoff and Karen McConnaughay:
From Senator Althoff:
Sen. Althoff appointed to the Human Trafficking Task Force
Springfield, IL. State Senator Pamela Althoff (R-McHenry) is one of twelve Illinois legislators appointed to the newly created Human Trafficking Task Force.
The task force will look at how the State of Illinois can partner with agencies to combat human trafficking in Illinois. The task force will submit a report of its findings and recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly no later than June 30, 2017.
“Human trafficking is not a foreign issue, it’s an issue that lives in our neighborhoods and communities right here at home,” said Sen. Althoff.
“This modern day act of slavery targets the vulnerable.
“It could be your neighbor or your child who becomes a victim next. This task force looks to take action to help prevent that.”
The Human Trafficking Task Force was created under House Bill 2822 which was signed into law in August. The task force is comprised of twelve legislators (3 from each legislative caucus), a representative of the Chicago Regional Human Trafficking Task Force and the Director of the Illinois State Police.
The three appointees selected by Senate Republican Leader Christine Radogno (R-Lemont) include:
- Sen. Pamela Althoff (R-McHenry)
- Sen. Karen McConnaughay (R-West Dundee)
- Sen. Kyle McCarter (R-Lebanon)
“I am honored to be one of the legislators selected to confront this growing problem,” said. Sen. Althoff. “Together, I hope to bring this heart-wrenching issue to light so we can effectively prevent more victims from being exploited.”
From Senator McConnaughay:
Last week, as part of my efforts to help eliminate human trafficking in Illinois, I attended Aurora University’s forum,“Human Trafficking, Global Problem, Local Impact.” A panel of government and not-for-profit experts gathered to discuss the growing issue of local human trafficking.
Here are some key points I’d like to share.
In the Chicago area, an estimated 15,000–25,000 women and children are victims of trafficking every year, according to Paul Baker, Aurora University.
Also, human traffickers have recently adopted social media as a recruitment tool. Predators may now pose as friends on social channels in order to obtain information or images, and potentially exhort them, according to Tara Smith, FBI.
Following the signature of my Human Trafficking Task Force bill, I am now working with the Governor to advance the goals and formation of a new statewide task force.