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Anti-human sex trafficking strategies are now in Arizona


State choses City of Scottsdale to train workers

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - Attorney General Mark Brnovich announces his office (AGO), the Arizona Anti-Trafficking Network (AATN) and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) have teamed up with the City of Scottsdale to train all public employees on how to identify, report and prevent human sex trafficking.

“Stopping human trafficking takes the community coming together,” shared Brnovich Thursday. “I am proud of our Community Outreach team and their work to help the SAFE Action Project evolve since it was first launched; now providing critical training to one of Arizona’s largest cities. Together, we are making a difference and helping exploited, vulnerable individuals in our communities.”

As a municipal of heavy tourism, it tends to attract human traffickers. That's why the AGO, AATN and HSI have partnered with Scottsdale to train all city employees.

“Scottsdale prides itself on being a safe community – we are a safe place to live, and a safe place to visit and do business,” said Mayor David D. Ortega. “It is very sad to know that these terrible kinds of crimes can occur here or anywhere. Working with the Attorney General’s Office to train our workforce will equip our staff to spot these situations and could help save someone who is being exploited. We are committed to being part of the solution.”

The SAFE Action Project recently began training more than 2,400 City of Scottsdale employees. Trainers say once 75% of the employees complete the training, it will become the first city to be SAFE certified.

Scottsdale's police confirmed officers will also provide training to local restaurants and bars on the warning signs of human trafficking. Staff would leave training with the skills to identify crime and act accordingly.

“Protecting the most vulnerable is a critical part of the police department’s mission, and this partnership aligns with our efforts to fight human trafficking and exploitation,” said Scottsdale Police Chief Jeff Walther. “No city is immune from these horrible crimes, including ours. In response, I recently brought a unit online that focuses wholly on reducing involuntary servitude and sex trafficking through education, enforcement, and human services. These alliances and the efforts of SAFE are key components in what takes a team approach to combat.”

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