LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Experts say human trafficking cases spike during large sporting events, prompting state and city officials Tuesday to hold a news conference to tackle the issue ahead of Super Bowl LVI.
California Attorney General Rob Bonta and Los Angeles City Council President Nury Martinez spoke Tuesday at L.A. International Airport as part of "It's a Penalty," a global human trafficking prevention organization.
Over the coming weeks, the campaign will be airing a video on some flights into L.A. that highlight the problem. Ride-sharing giant Uber will also have drivers hang the human trafficking hotline number inside their cars.
L.A. officials said they take the problem seriously and are committed to cracking down.
"These are children whose childhoods have been stolen," Martinez said. "These are young women and men who are forced to engage in sexual acts against their will. If you believe your witnessing human trafficking, you need to speak up, and you need to report this immediately."
It's A Penalty has also partnered with the NFL and LAX to display signs on digital screens across the airport that provide resources targeted at identifying and reporting human trafficking.
The Super Bowl will take place at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood on Feb. 13.
If you or someone you know is a victim of human trafficking, call the National human hotline at (888) 373-7888 or go to the California Attorney General's website.
for more features.