News Releases
May 29, 2013

Boston Bar to Host Symposium on Human Trafficking (Media Advisory)

Press Release

Human Trafficking: A Call to Action
A Free Symposium Convening Key Players 
Boston Bar Association Public Interest Leadership Program, Criminal Law Section, Immigration Section, Labor & Employment Law Section, Administration of Justice Section.

Thursday, June 6, 2013 from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM

Boston Bar Association
16 Beacon St., Boston MA, 02108

Why Now:   
It has been 15 months since the enactment of “An Act Relative to the Commercial Exploitation of People” in February 2012. The statute provides criminal penalties for sexual servitude and enticing a child to engage in prostitution or commercial sexual activity, establishes the crime of organ trafficking, and creates a trust fund for victims of human trafficking.

  • In its traditional role as a convener, the Boston Bar Association will launch a conversation among representatives from the patchwork of groups committed to addressing human trafficking — law enforcement, legal services, academia, government, and human services — to provide a forum for extended discussion, collaboration, and sharing of information.  
  • Policy recommendations by the Attorney General’s Interagency Human Trafficking Task Force regarding future steps to address human trafficking are due by the end of the summer, and this forum will provide a framework for understanding the big picture.  

Human Trafficking in Boston:   
According to the Office of the Attorney General, “Because of the nature of  the crime, there is no sound methodology to measure the problem.” However, we do know:

  • As of November 2012, almost 500 minors in Suffolk County — mostly girls — had been identified as either at high risk or as victims of commercial sexual exploitation.
  • A statement from the Attorney General indicates that most victims of human trafficking enter ‘the life’ between the ages of 12-14; victims include adult women and men as well.
  • Since February 2012, there have been four major arrests in the Boston area relating to human trafficking: in March 2012, October 2012, December 2012, and most recently earlier this month in May 2013.