In February 2017, New York City’s First Lady Chirlane McCray and New York Police Commissioner James O’Neill unveiled what was supposed to be a 24-hour hotline where victims of sex trafficking could call for help. McCray affirmed that the number would connect to a “specially trained officer.”
But on Thursday, the New York Post reported that it called that hotline—and others supposedly set up with the same purpose—and ended up with wrong numbers or confused cops.
When the Post called the number, a woman from the Special Victims Division (the wrong unit) answered, “No, this is not the sex-trafficking hotline,” and forwarded reporters to a number at the correct unit. But a woman there then forwarded them back to the original incorrect number.
The Post also called the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office’s supposed 24-hour hotline, but then this happened:
One call there was answered by a befuddled cop who said, “Sex trafficking? You got me there.” He then transferred the caller to the office’s human-trafficking unit. A woman who answered there was annoyed the cop had passed off the call but was willing to help.
Cop: Crimes? Hmm....let me pass this off....
A very reassuring answer, I’m sure, for anyone who is taking the risk to call a hotline for help.