Thursday, April 9, 2020

It’s a group effort: The fight against Human Trafficking

Latest articles

Oregon reports six COVID-19 deaths, 83 new cases

COVID-19 has claimed six more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 44, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Conversation with Samaritan’s Dr. Lesley Ogden – COVID-19

The other day, I reached out to Lesley Ogden, MD, CEO of both Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital in Lincoln City and Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital in Newport, to get some insight on the Covid-19 situation on the central Oregon coast, and what this may mean for society and healthcare in the future.

City of Seaside approves sweeping relief program

With its normally bustling tourism economy on pause due to dramatic local, county, and state restrictions necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Seaside approved a diverse and far-reaching relief program in a special meeting of the City Council on Monday, April 6, 2020.

Oregon reports four COVID-19 deaths, 49 new cases

COVID-19 has claimed four more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 33, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Otis armed robbery fugitive in custody after high-speed chase

Wanted fugitive Jacob Leeland Lunstedt was taken into custody today after a tip to Salem Police led to his capture by local law enforcement after a high-speed chase on Forest Service Road 1726.

Child care openings available to essential workers

Samaritan Early Learning Center in Lincoln City has been approved by the state to provide emergency child care for a prioritized group of essential workers.

Reporter rides bike in Lincoln City, takes pictures

I rode my bike through the seven miles that is Lincoln City Monday and took some pictures along the way. 

Oregon reports 1 COVID-19 death, 69 new cases

COVID-19 has claimed one more life in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll from 26 to 27, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Oregon reports four new COVID-19 deaths, 100 new cases

COVID-19 has claimed four more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll from 22 to 26, the Oregon Health Authority reported at 8 a.m. today.

Coalition of state agencies ask for voluntary hold on burning

In response to the "Stay Home, Save Lives" Executive Order to reduce the effects of the COVID-19 virus, a coalition of Oregon state agencies are asking Oregonians to voluntarily refrain from conducting outdoor burning. 

Human Trafficking Lincoln County

Human trafficking occurs in Lincoln County and it’s not like the movie Taken, where actor Liam Neeson goes on a mission to rescue his daughter from the clutches of Albanian sex-traffickers in France.

According to people who assist with human trafficking cases in Lincoln County, rural areas see parents and guardians exchanging access to their children for money, drugs or rent. Individuals use social media to make contact with juveniles — with runaways being especially at risk of becoming victims.

Oregon Department of Justice and Department of Human Services officials released statistics Thursday for a year-long period between October 2018 and October 2019, identifying 746 victims of human trafficking in Oregon.

human trafficking data

Although Lincoln County is not listed in these statistics, human trafficking does happen here and a Lincoln County task force was created in 2019 to combat the crime of recruiting, harboring, transporting, providing or obtaining a person for a commercial sex act or child pornography.

Through special training and interagency collaboration, human trafficking is being fought by teams of cooperating agencies.

Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO) has a detective assigned to the Lincoln County task force who receives specialized training and continuing education for human trafficking.

“It’s a group effort,” LCSO Detective Maleri Cates said. “Every agency we work with is key. No one agency or organization could do this alone.”

Interagency collaboration has been key to identifying victims of human trafficking — some not even aware they were victims — by building trust, opening lines of communication and being aware.

ODOJ and DHS officials will hand out awards Friday, Jan. 10 at the ODOJ office, 100 SW Market Street in Portland, honoring the efforts of those who work to prevent human trafficking, including a team which stopped a trafficking ring in Lane County recently.

“Human trafficking and the exploitation of minors, sadly, affects every corner of Oregon,” Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum said. “The individuals and community members we are honoring on Human Trafficking Awareness Day represent the courage, trust, and strong inter-agency partnerships necessary to help keep our most vulnerable Oregonians, especially children, safe from traffickers.”

“A large portion of human trafficking contact originates on social media,” Cates said. She advises parents and guardians to check their children’s phones for any strange apps and be on the lookout for new jewelry or even a new phone — a prime avenue for an individual seeking to lure a juvenile into a dangerous situation.

If you suspect human trafficking, or are a victim of human trafficking, call the National Human Trafficking Hotline, 1-888-3737-888, or text BEFREE (233733) or contact your local law enforcement agency. Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office maintains a tip line at 541-265-0669.

In 2010, Barack Obama issued a Presidential Proclamation designating January National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention month. Human Trafficking Awareness Day takes place this year Saturday, Jan. 11.

Contact reporter Justin Werner at 541-992-0321 or email [email protected]

- Advertisement -
Justin Werner
Justin Werner
Justin Werner is founder and publisher of Lincoln City Homepage and a journalist reporting news for the fine citizens of Lincoln City, Oregon and beyond. He's on a mission to seek out truth and isn't afraid to be the tip of the spear for freedom of the press. When he's not wearing his reporter hat, you can find him enjoying the Oregon Coast with his wife and three children.

Related articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Comment with Facebook