In the coming weeks the Pittsburgh City Council will vote on whether to regulate sex trafficking out of the massage industry--or not. Women trafficked in massage parlors may be forced to see 6 to 10 clients a day, working 10am to 2am, seven days a week. It is a crime which degrades our common humanity.
In Pittsburgh, there are 15+ massage parlors advertised and reviewed on forums catering to men who buy sex. These are only a tiny number of the 5000+ brothels which appear to sell sex in the United States, and are at a high risk of involving sex trafficking. However, there is no acceptable number of slaves in any American city, so even these few must leave.
The massage parlor regulation ordinance, Bill No. 2011 - 1635, builds upon the strong work of Pennsylvania Massage Therapists' state licensure law and teases apart legitimate from illegitimate massage establishments. The ordinance includes requirements that windows be unbarred, massage-room doors unlocked, and establishments properly advertised. If it passes in tact, Pittsburgh will be the first city in the United States to comprehensively approach ending sex trafficking in massage parlors. If it does not, women will continue to be enslaved. Please help us encourage the Pittsburgh city council to vote YES on this bill.
If you are interested in ending sex trafficking in your neighborhood using a similar bill, please contact Jessica Dickinson Goodman (jdickins [at] andrew [dot] cmu [dot] edu) or Jaime Turek (jevanoski [at] endhumantrafficking [dot] org).
If you are interested in learning more about human trafficking or if you would like to become involved in Pittsburgh, please visit The Project to End Human Trafficking at www.endhumantrafficking.org.