I, Mike Dunleavy, Governor of the State of Alaska, under the authority of Article III, Sections 1 and 24, of the Alaska Constitution, hereby order the establishment of the Governor’s Council on Human and Sex Trafficking within The Department of Public Safety.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE
Human traffickers utilize coercion, force, and fraud to force victims into servitude and commercial prostitution. Traffickers lure their victims with promises of honest work opportunities, safe housing, and the opportunity of a better life, then exploit these individuals in numerous ways, including street prostitution, illicit massage parlors, brothels, and online advertising, in order to enhance the traffickers’ economic position. Indeed, human trafficking generates an estimated $150 billion in illegal revenues each year. There is no typical victim and there is no typical trafficker. Victims of human trafficking can be of any race, color, national origin, religion, age, gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, or socioeconomic status. Likewise, human traffickers can be gang members, diplomats, business owners, labor brokers, farmers, or fishermen. Alaska is not immune to human trafficking and in fact studies show that Alaska Native youth are more likely to be disproportionately affected by human trafficking.
The Governor’s Council on Human and Sex Trafficking is created to combat the exploitation of Alaskans.
The Governor’s Council on Human and Sex Trafficking will consist of 13 voting members and two ex-officio members as detailed below. All voting members are appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of, the Governor. The Governor shall select a Chair and Vice Chair from the voting members.
The 13 voting members shall be comprised of the following:
- One representative from the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority.
- The Commissioner of the Department of Health and Social Services, or designee.
- The Alaska Attorney General, or designee.
- The Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety, or designee.
- The Commissioner of the Department of Corrections, or designee.
- The Commissioner of the Department of Education, or designee.
- Two Mayors or local-government-elected officials.
- One representative from a victim advocacy organization.
- One representative from an Alaska Native stakeholder organization.
- One representative from a local law enforcement agency.
- One representative of a faith-based community organization.
- One representative of a homelessness direct-service provider.
- The Governor requests two ex-officio members, one who is a member of the Alaska State Senate appointed by the Senate President, and one who is a member of the Alaska House of Representatives, appointed by the Speaker of the House.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
The Council shall prepare a report for the Governor that:
- Identifies gaps in gathering human trafficking information.
- Provides recommendations on ways to increase responsiveness to reports of human trafficking.
- Provides recommendations for establishing and funding short and long-term safe shelters.
- Provides recommendations for implementing media awareness campaigns regarding human trafficking.
- Provides recommendations for making education services available to potential trafficking victims.
- Provides recommendations for making victim advocacy services more available to potential trafficking victims.
- Provides recommendations regarding how to educate minors about human trafficking.
- Recommends possible training opportunities specifically related to identification of and assisting trafficking victims.
- Recommends improvements to providing outreach information in multiple languages.
The Council shall deliver its report to the Governor by September 30, 2022.
Administrative support for the Council is assigned to the Department of Public Safety. Consistent with applicable law and available appropriations, the Department of Public Safety shall provide administrative support for the Council using existing personnel and monetary resources.
Council members receive no compensation or other remuneration from the State as members of the Council. Members of the Council who are not state or federal employees are entitled to per diem and travel expenses in the same manner permitted for members of state boards and commissions. Per diem and travel expenses for members of the Council who are a representative of a state or federal agency are the responsibility of that agency.
The Council may create advisory-only subcommittees.
The Council will meet monthly, at a minimum. Additional meetings may be called by the Chair. The Council and its subcommittees will use teleconferencing and other electronic means, to the extent practicable, in order to gain maximum public participation at minimum cost.
At times and locations to be determined by the Chair, the Council may convene public meetings to present information and receive comments.
A majority of the members of the Council constitutes a quorum for conducting business.
Meetings of the Council, or any subcommittees thereof shall be conducted, and notice of meetings provided, in accordance with AS 44.62.310 and 44.62.319 (Open Meetings Act).
Records of the Council, and all subcommittees, are subject to inspection, copying, and distribution as public records under AS 40.25.110 – 40.25.220.
This Order takes effect immediately.
DATED this 14th day of December, 2021.