McGinn joins NW mayors, pledges to fight crime along I-5 corridor
Mayor Mike McGinn joined mayors and police chiefs from Southern Oregon to Vancouver, B.C., at a summit in Portland, Ore., this week to discuss ways to work together to crack down on crime along the Interstate 5 corridor.
The I-5 corridor is a West Coast pipeline for criminal activity and gangs trafficking in guns, drugs and the sexual exploitation of children.
"The challenges we face in public safety are regional in nature. Criminal enterprise gang operations involving drugs, gun trafficking and the commercial sexual exploitation of minors is an activity that is highly mobile and sophisticated and operates in all our cities," said McGinn. "Pimps lure young women into the trade and transport them up and down the I-5 corridor. It is beyond the capacity of any one police department to address."
McGinn spoke extensively about the problem of underage sex trafficking in Seattle, particularly in relation to backpage.com, a national online classifieds page. Sgt. Michael Geiger of the Portland Police Department gave a presentation about underage sex trafficking in which he focused heavily on the exploitation of children on backpage.com.
At the conclusion of the Pacific Northwest 1-5 Corridor Public Safety Summit, participating leaders signed a collective statement of support pledging greater cooperation to combat criminal activity along I-5. The unprecedented collaboration focuses on increased communication and information sharing between public agencies.
Seattle will host the next Pacific Northwest I-5 Corridor Public Safety Summit in 2012.
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