Panel proposes $13 million plan to treat sex trafficking victims

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A state task force is recommending a $13 million plan to treat victims of sex trafficking as part of the Safe Harbor Act that goes into effect in 2014, MPR reports.

The law passed three years ago requires authorities to treat sexually exploited children as victims instead of criminals.

Currently, there are only a handful of beds in the state specifically dedicated to sexually exploited youth. Most of the funding, about $8.5 million, would go towards housing with a higher level of security and therapeutic service.

The panel estimates the state will need about 35 beds on any given night when the new law goes into effect.

Most of the plan will be funded by the state. MPR says advocated are expected to as the Legislature for about $10 million.

Last year, the FBI ranked Minnesota as the nation's 13 largest center for sex trafficking children.

According the the Polaris Project, Minnesota is one of only eight states that has passed Safe Harbor legislation.

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