Human trafficking is a problem in Florida. According to the data, there are more than 2,500 contacts or tips, in 2020 and 738 cases.
The three Collier County leaders want to see those numbers go down. Their goal is to rescue victims and prosecute sellers and buyers, and they hope to do so with a new model called ISP.
Police Chief Kevin Rambosk said he wanted to prevent this from happening.
Linda Oberhaus is the CEO of Shelter for abused women and children in Naples. “We want to be able to provide the support they need so they can win and get on with their lives,” she said.
ISP stands for identity, support and prosecution.
“Our sheriff and his staff will identify the sex traffickers, and the buyers, which will serve as a haven to assist the identified victims,” explains Oberhaus. . “And then it will be our State Attorney Amira Fox, who will ultimately prosecute those found to be selling or buying. ”
The trio said the model took the prosecution of traffickers seriously and made buying sex a more serious criminal offence. Currently, prostitution and the purchase of “John” are misdemeanors.
“When you think about the history of prostitution, you think about the person providing the service,” Rambosk said. That’s not the point of this show. The focus of this program is on finding traffickers because we have found that a high percentage of people are trafficked out of their will.”
According to The Shelter for Abuse Women & Children, 90% of female sex workers have a trafficker.
Shelters have increased in number.
It expanded its facility and created the Shelly Stayer Center in Immokalee.
Oberhaus said the center in Collier County helps victims of domestic violence and human trafficking.
“It was a 60-bed shelter. It comes in three separate pods and we have one of those pods that has been specifically designated for victims of human trafficking,” added Oberhaus.
At the center, victims have resources such as counseling and the opportunity to take control of their own lives. But the reality is that not everyone has that opportunity. Trafficking in persons does not discriminate on the basis of age, race or sex.
Sheriff Rambosk and State Attorney Amira Fox said, believe it or not, it’s happening in our backyard.
“Unfortunately, we see statistics that as early as the age of 15, young people are drawn into this by a trafficker,” Rambosk said. “In the last 3-5 years, we have made more than 20 traffic or arrests. And we have rescued dozens of people.”
Fox explains the level in Southwest Florida. “We’ve had two or three large-scale human trafficking cases in the ring, meaning all five counties, we’ve had some really big cases in Collier County.”
The team will need an effort to stop the cycle, and these three leaders are confident that the ISP model will make a difference.
However, Rambosk is confident that they can fight human trafficking. “If we can get rid of the buyers; if we can provide training to the community, and to our law enforcement officers and with the help of state attorneys general. We have zero tolerance for human trafficking in Collier County. ”
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https://www.winknews.com/2022/01/27/collier-sheriff-state-attorney-and-ceo-of-shelter-work-to-combat-human-trafficking-with-isp-model/ Sheriff Collier, state attorney and the shelter’s CEO work to fight human trafficking with the ISP model