Governor Signs Bill To Combat Human Trafficking In Oklahoma

Tuesday, May 24th 2022, 9:03 am


Gov. Kevin Stitt signed a new bill looking to help fight human trafficking in Oklahoma.

It would create the Human Trafficking Response Unit, which would be inside the attorney general's office.

The author, Republican Rep. Jeff Boatman, hopes it will create more coordination between responding agencies across the state.

The Human Trafficking Response Unit would help that coordination, by first creating a database related to human trafficking, so law enforcement and support groups would be able to share information consistently and easily.

The unit would also create training programs for other law enforcement agencies and victims of human trafficking.

Just last month, a Texas girl was rescued in Oklahoma after disappearing in Dallas, a case where more than eight people have been arrested.

Boatman says this new law would help in cases like this and will help similar cases in the future.

"I hope that we can get back together and talk about how trafficking used to be a problem in Oklahoma. How we rose up and committed efforts to it, and this is part of the country where traffickers are afraid to play in," said Boatman.

While this new law takes effect immediately, two other bills which would fund the task force and database have now been sent to the governor to sign.