HARRISBURG – Legislation will soon be introduced by Erie County Sen. Dan Laughlin and Cameron County Sen. Cris Dush which would update existing “safe harbor laws” to address the gaps in current statute regarding the protection and support of minors who have been sexual exploited. Laughlin said minors of sex trafficking should not be charged with prostitution, but be recognized as victims and provided with the needed support to help them recover. The proposal will cover all criminal offenses related to the sexual exploitation of children, not just specific crimes. County agencies will help identify and assist sexually exploited children, which will strengthen the overall effectiveness of the program. The plan will also seek to ensure the privacy and safety of children since confidentiality is paramount to protecting sexually exploited children from further harm. It will also create alternative interventions and support mechanisms for sexually exploited children.