Kansas, Nebraska get high marks for laws to prevent sex trafficking

Kansas and Nebraska have among the strongest laws in the nation to prevent sex trafficking of minors and to help victims of these crimes, according to the advocacy group Shared Hope International. Both of those Midwestern states received “A” grades in the group’s national report card for 2019. These grades are based on 41 components of state law — for example, the criminal penalties for perpetrators and facilitators of trafficking crimes; the types of legal protections and services provided to victims; and the investigative tools given to law enforcement.

Nebraska was identified as the most improved state in the nation. The reason: a policy change in 2019 that ensures specialized interventions and responses in all sex-trafficking cases involving a minor.

Despite many policy advances over the past decade, Shared Hope International says, gaps in state law still exist. Among them: victims’ lack of access to restorative services outside the juvenile justice system. In the Midwest, six states were given grades of “B”: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin. The states of North Dakota and Ohio were given a “C” by Shared Hope International; South Dakota was given a “D.”
Stateline Midwest: December 20192.33 MB