Kristi Noem Endorses SB67, Outlines Stronger Anti-Trafficking Measures


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Kristi Noem today endorsed S.B.67, which would permit child trafficking survivors to expunge criminal records obtained as a result of the victimization. Noem also outlined stronger anti-trafficking measures she would seek as governor. Click to view initiative.

“By some estimates, 100,000 individuals are trafficked in the U.S. each year, most of them women and many of them children. Sadly, South Dakota is not immune,” said Noem. “Month after month, we read stomach-churning reports of sex trafficking from across the state. There is a role each of us can play in fighting trafficking by simply understanding what to look out for, but a broader policy shift needs to occur as well to better prevent trafficking, intervene when it does occur, and help survivors rebuild.”

In 2015, Noem championed the decade’s most comprehensive anti-trafficking initiative – an effort led by the Bipartisan Women’s Caucus of which Noem was the chair. The legislation enhanced law enforcement tools, better supported intervention programs, and provided additional resources to survivors. It also included safe harbor provisions similar to S.B.67, helping ensure trafficking survivors would be treated as victims, not criminals. Since the 2015 bill became law, Noem has pushed legislation to expand trafficking demand reduction programs, go after online actors who knowingly facilitate trafficking, and help survivors with housing and other needs.


Get tough on those who sell, buy, or market trafficking victims for sex. Whether you’re a trafficker, a website that facilitates trafficking, or someone who purchases trafficking victims for sex, your activity will have no place in South Dakota. As Governor, I will ensure South Dakota does not go easy on perpetrators – the punishment will fit the heinousness of these crimes.

Make sure traffickers pay. Traffickers make an estimated $150 billion annually, according to the International Labor Organization. If elected governor, I will fight to strengthen the state’s restitution laws in trafficking cases, bringing justice and offering victims more financial support for medical and mental health services, housing, childcare and other related expenses.

Expand intervention training to first responders and medical professionals. Research indicates more than 85% of survivors received medical treatment while being trafficked, but the vast majority of healthcare professionals have never received training on how to identify a victim or intervene should they suspect something is going on. We must leverage federal and state training resources, in partnership with nonprofits and professional organizations, to ensure South Dakota’s healthcare professionals are equipped to identify and intervene when a victim enters the exam room.

Secure access to emergency and transitional housing. A home is so often where recovery begins, and yet, transitional housing for sex trafficking survivors is scarce. In many cases, sex trafficking survivors require stronger security protocols and different support services than other victims of violence. If elected, I would expand existing grant programs in order to offer transitional housing, healing, and hope to many more trafficking survivors.

14 Replies to “Kristi Noem Endorses SB67, Outlines Stronger Anti-Trafficking Measures”

  1. Anonony

    I’m slightly confused. Was it Justice for Victims of Trafficking HR3530 that she “championed?” That doesn’t seem to have gone anywhere, and I don’t see her as a sponsor. Or was it Senate Bill 178, the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015?
    That seems to include the Human Trafficking Prevention and Recovery Act of 2015. That was sponsored by Noem, but what did that do?
    As per it:
    Requires the interagency task force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking to conduct a review that surveys state and federal agencies, surveys academic literature, and then identifies best practices to deter such actions. Then it requires a report.
    So her big accomplishment in fighting human trafficking was to ask for two surveys and then generate a report? I don’t belittle her for HR350, but to say she “championed” or “led” the fight is a significant mis-characterization.

    1. Sandy

      Is this true? If so she is calling a bill that basically creates a task force to study human trafficking the most comprehensive anti-trafficking initiative in a decade. Reminds me about how she said the estate tax caused a hardship for her family even though they received over a million in life insurance too. Lots of embellishment. Where’s the beef!

  2. Anonymous

    The federal agents who have virtually unlimited power to hunt down sex traffickers are causing more human suffering than the traffickers themselves. I’d advise any victim reading this to seek help from your own neighborhood. The feds are likely to subject you to another round of victimization that’s even more severe than what you’ve already endured.

      1. Anonymous

        On this I agree with you, Ike. Being physically threatened and forced to sell yourself to someone else for sex seems pretty devastating; much less so than having to cooperate with Federal law enforcement to hunt down and convict the animals who traffic in humans. Maybe there’s something we’re missing?

        1. Anonymous

          The U.S. government publishes no statistics about federal law enforcement agents arrested on charges related to child rape and child pornography, but the author of this article managed to track down information on several dozen of them. These are just a few examples of agents who got caught. We can only guess how often federal law enforcement agencies cover up even worse crimes perpetrated by their own employees.

          1. Anonymous

            “Dozens of FBI agents were fired, disciplined and even prosecuted between 1986 and 1999 over their involvement in crimes ranging from rape, child abuse and attempted murder to bribery, extortion and drug trafficking, according to a report made public yesterday”…

            Mr. Grassley, Iowa Republican, said the document, known as the Behavioral and Ethical Trends Analysis, or the BETA report, was “alarming,” saying it described the FBI’s “lack of response to the findings and recommendations, the general lack of support for the project, the efforts to prevent its completion and attempts to withhold the report from Congress and the public.”

            “The shocking report is a laundry list of horrors, with examples of agents who committed rape, sexual crimes against children, other sexual deviance and misconduct, attempted murder of a spouse and narcotics violations, among many others,” he said.


            1. Ike

              Crooked cops again? While I’ll admit that’s an issue, I don’t really see that cops commit crimes at any greater rate than your average person. It’s heinous, no doubt. I don’t think though that victims should use this 14 year old article as an excuse for reporting crimes.

        1. Ike

          So you’re saying that one has nothing to do with the other. Got it. So why isn’t it “conservative” to chair a bipartisan committee for women?