Last week, the California Catholic Conference of Bishops announced its support for Proposition 35, the Californians Against Sexual Exploitation (CASE) Act, designed to strengthen penalties against human trafficking and improve Megan’s Law against online predators. The following statement was issued Sept. 11 by Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Gerald Wilkerson, president of the CCC:“Human trafficking, which involves the enslaving of individuals in order to use them for financial gain, is an intolerable affront to human dignity. “As Catholics, we are called to listen to the wisdom of Pope Paul VI in the Vatican II document, Gaudium et Spes (Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World):“‘…[W]hatever is opposed to life itself … whatever violates the integrity of the human person … whatever insults humanity — such as subhuman living conditions, arbitrary imprisonment, deportation, slavery, prostitution … all these things…poison human society…. Moreover, they are a supreme dishonor to the Creator.’“As president of the California Catholic Conference of Bishops, I speak for my brother bishops when I call upon all people of good will to support those who are working to eradicate this violent and oppressive practice — especially our Catholic women religious, who besides their advocacy for the elimination of trafficking, have provided healthcare and social services for those rescued from their enslavers“In particular, this November, we are supporting a ballot measure — Proposition 35, Californians Against Sexual Exploitation Act — which will both increase criminal penalties for human trafficking and direct fines to enhanced victim services and law enforcement. “We ask that you also prayerfully consider supporting Proposition 35.”More information on Proposition 35 is available at{gallery width=100 height=100}gallery/2012/0921/props/{/gallery}