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Release Date: May 20, 2018

News 12 has been running a series recently about sex trafficking.  Earlier this week the station highlighted the efforts of the town of Greenburgh. The link to the story is below.



The Greenburgh Town Board enacted a strong law that enables the town to close down massage facilities that are involved in illegal activity.  Over the years numerous arrests have been made, including for prostitution. The good news: we closed down all the facilities that are not legitimate - the most recent closure took place recently.


We have been working with hotels and motels in Greenburgh and want employees and management to proactively start training hotel  and motel workers on the warning signs of human trafficking.


Some of the hotels (like La Quinta) in Greenburgh have received more police calls than other hotels in the county because the management of the hotel works with the police and calls the police when they suspect suspicious activity.


The news 12 series...


Lawmakers and police are taking action in the wake of the eight-month “Turn to Tara” investigation into human trafficking across the Hudson Valley.

The “Slavery in Suburbia” report put a microscope over the issue, and was noticed by hundreds of viewers, activists, elected officials and law enforcement leaders.

“We got ahead of this with public outreach,” said Greenburgh Police Chief Chris McNerney. “With our forums in Greeburgh and Pace Law School, we have built relationships with hotels.”

MORE: Slavery in Suburbia Part 1: Sex trafficking of children flourishing in the Hudson Valley

MORE: Slavery in Suburbia Part 2: Victim describes life as an underground sex slave

MORE: Slavery in Suburbia Part 3: Woman recounts job opportunity turning into slavery

MORE: Slavery in Suburbia Part 4: Sex trade thrives online




Many of those hotels are on an interactive map where News 12 viewers can see what crimes police have responded to. The La Quinta Inn in Elmford had the most hits in Westchester.

“It’s not just happening at La Quinta. It’s happening at other hotels in town. It’s happening at neighboring communities, and we are all doing what we can to combat this,” said McNerney.

Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner now wants to become the first municipality in the state to proactively start training hotel and motel workers on the warning signs of human trafficking even before a new state law could require it.

“We want to work proactively with the hotels and want management and employees to recognize we take this seriously,” he said.

While he's definitely come across more prostitutes than trafficking victims on the job, Chief McNerney hopes the change could have an impact on the booming “sex for sale” business in Greenburgh, which attracts sex workers from across the country.

Assemblywoman Amy Paulin's bill that would require mandatory training for hotel workers has passed the state Assembly but not the Senate.

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