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Re "16-year-old girl has pimp's name carved on her back" (Viewpoints, May 25): This year is the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation yet, tragically, human beings in America are still sold and forced into sex and other forms of labor. Force, coercion, fraud and being too young to make informed choices are the shackles.

California has one of the highest rates of human trafficking in the country. Those trapped into forced labor are too afraid or don't know where or how to get help.

Senate Bill 1193 (by Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg), co-sponsored by the National Council of Jewish Women-California, requires posting of toll-free hotline numbers to assist victims in getting help and the public in reporting suspicious activities. For a trafficked person an available hotline number can make the difference between slavery and freedom. Other states have enacted similar policies with positive results.

Passage of SB 1193 by the California legislature is an important step toward ending modern-day slavery.

-- Claire Lipschultz, JD, Carmichael