San Francisco Mayor London Breed has announced new initiatives to combat and prevent human trafficking in the US city.
Starting this month, the Department of Public Health’s Environmental Health Inspectors will begin incorporating new anti-human trafficking training into their inspection process, Xinhua news agency quoted the Mayor as saying in her announcement on Friday.
The Environmental Health Branch employs approximately 100 inspectors who conduct regular on-site inspections of over 9,000 businesses, such as restaurants and bars, gas stations, massage establishments, and residential hotels.
Breed announced at a press conference hosted by the San Francisco Collaborative Against Human Trafficking (SFCAHT) to commence January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month.
SFCAHT is a group of anti-trafficking advocates, service providers, survivors, and Bay Area government and law enforcement officials.
“Every San Franciscan deserves to feel safe and live without fear of exploitation. Even as we face one of the greatest public health crises of our lifetime, our work to end human trafficking in our city must continue,” said Breed.
The San Francisco International Airport, the Department of Public Health, and the Department on the Status of Women have joined together to advance the efforts.
Fifty-one human trafficking cases were reported directly to the San Francisco Police Department in 2020, according to the announcement.
“In 2019, the Mayor’s Task Force on Anti-Human Trafficking found that there were an estimated 673 cases of human trafficking within the last two years reported to local service providers,” the announcement said.