Jesiel Passes First Bill, Looks to Shine Light on Human-Trafficking

SPRINGFIELD – State Representative Sheri Jesiel (R-Winthrop Harbor) passed her first major piece of legislation in the Illinois House of Representatives this week. The legislation, House Bill 2822, creates the Human-Trafficking Task Force Act. The task force will examine the traumatic impact that human-trafficking is having in Illinois and offer solutions by June of 2016 as to how the state of Illinois can counter this surprisingly prevalent practice.

“Although many of us don’t realize it, human-trafficking occurs right under our noses each and every day in many of our communities,” said Jesiel. “While there are many initiatives under way around the country and Illinois that seek to curtail human-trafficking, many challenges still remain. This legislation allows for a thorough examination of how the perpetrators are circumventing current law and recommend better methods so that we as a state can stop this heartbreaking practice and rescue the thousands impacted by this everyday in Illinois.”

Jesiel has become an advocate of bringing a halt to human-trafficking and other issues relating to human exploitation. The United States State Department estimates that 14,500 to 17,500 people are trafficked in the United States every year. While every state criminalizes at least some form of trafficking activity, legislators across the nation continue to explore new ways to combat traffickers and provide support for victims.

“The reality is that human-trafficking is a lucrative business, but before we can reduce and eventually eliminate it, we need to understand why and how it has become so profitable in Illinois,” said Jesiel. “I’m thankful to my colleagues for recognizing this and I hope the Senate will act quickly to put this before the Governor for his signature into law.”