Senate to hold joint hearing on slavery and trafficking
Thursday, December 03, 2009
 
California’s role in the growing
global problem of human trafficking
 
SACRAMENTO – Human trafficking is one of the fastest-growing criminal industries in the world, according to the National Human Trafficking Resource Center, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
 
To combat the problem within California, legislators have passed anti-trafficking laws. Now, two State Senate committees are considering California’s role – as the world’s eighth largest economy – in the global problem of human trafficking.
 
WHAT: “Everyone’s Business: California’s Role in Combating Human Rights Violations in Product Supply Chains”
 
WHEN: 10 a.m. Monday, Dec. 7
 
WHERE: Auditorium of the Ronald Reagan State Building, 300 South Spring St., Los Angeles
 
WHO: This is a joint hearing of the Senate Standing Committee on Labor and Industrial Relations, chaired by Sen. Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord), and the Senate Standing Committee on Judiciary, chaired by Sen. Ellen M. Corbett (D-San Leandro) .
State Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, who requested the hearing, will also attend. Last year, Steinberg introduced Senate Bill 657, which requires retailers’ and manufacturers’ to provide consumers with information about corporate efforts to eradicate slave labor and trafficking from product supply chains.
 
VISUALS: Two trafficking victims will share their stories.

NUMBERS
• Worldwide, nearly 12.3 million people (equivalent to one-third of California’s population) are working in some form of forced labor worldwide, according to the International Labor Organization.

California is positioned to impact the supply chains of products associated with slavery and trafficking.
• California imported nearly $200 billion in merchandise from abroad in the first three quarters of 2009 alone—nearly 18 percent of all imports into the United States.
• California’s wholesale trade sales in 2002 were more than $655 billion, retail sales totaled $359 billion, and accommodation and food services totaled more than $55 billion.