Signs point to drop in human trafficking in Houston

A year after Houston launched its ambitious 91-point strategic plan to combat human trafficking, officials are reporting heartening progress on a few fronts, including a decrease in illicit massage parlor advertising and an uptick in calls to trafficking hotlines.

"I definitely think we're making progress," said Minal Patel Davis, the mayor's special adviser on human trafficking. "It's very hard to measure. We are setting a tone in this city that this is not the place for you."

In Texas, there were 2,939 confirmed cases of human trafficking between 2007 and 2016. Roughly a third of those cases - 1,006 - originated in Houston, the mayor's office said Tuesday.

It's difficult to quantify how much impact the Anti-Human Trafficking Strategic Plan has had since then, but Davis said the city relies on certain key metrics.

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