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A rally for freedom
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A rally for freedom

National Football League playoffs begin this weekend, without a New York team but with all the hype and hoopla a football fan has come to expect. But some activists have noted a dark side to the excitement surrounding the sport, and especially its biggest day. The Super Bowl not only attracts a massive television audience, but, according to activists battling human trafficking, an increase in activity involving sex workers and other casualties of the trade in exploited women and children.

With the Super Bowl headed to the Meadowlands one year from now, state legislators are trying to crack down on human trafficking, which includes domestic servitude, forced labor, and child prostitution.

An Assembly committee has approved bipartisan legislation (A-3352) that would create a human trafficking commission, criminalize additional activities related to human trafficking, upgrade penalties on existing human trafficking or related crimes, and provide for increased training and public awareness on human trafficking issues.

Human trafficking is nothing less than modern-day slavery. This month, you can join NJ public officials, community leaders, and concerned citizens on “Human Trafficking Awareness Day” to call attention to this growing criminal industry and the need to strengthen laws to protect its victims and punish the perpetrators.

On Friday, Jan. 11, a rally will be held from 11 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. at the State House in Trenton, sponsored by the NJ Coalition Against Human Trafficking, an initiative of the Community Relations Committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ.

To register for the rally, go to www.jfedgmw.org/HTAD. (Busing and free box lunches will be available for those who register in advance.) For more information, visit njhumantrafficking.org.

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