Recently in Chicago, local law enforcement discovered a 15-year-old girl who had been lured into prostitution by two adults. The story is terrifying but had a just outcome: After the couple recruited the girl on the street, initiated her and tried to pimp her out, a police officer recognized that the girl was a minor. She was treated as a crime victim worthy of services and even helped identify her traffickers. It was discovered that the offender was already out on bond for involuntary servitude of a minor.
The Illinois Safe Children Act, passed last year, ensures that all minors are immune from prosecution for prostitution in our state. We send kudos to law enforcement for looking beneath the surface to recognize that this young woman needed help and that there were others behind the scenes seeking to profit. The Chicago Police Department’s Human Trafficking Task Force along with the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, Salvation Army’s STOP-IT program and DCFS all helped with this sting—many thanks to them for their collaborative response to human trafficking in our community.
The End Demand Illinois campaign seeks to hold pimps, traffickers and johns accountable for the harm they cause. The people who profit from the commercial sex trade are creating a demand for young women like the one in this story. Stand up against demand for the sex trade—visit www.enddemandillinois.org and sign up for our action alerts.