Massage Establishment Ordinance Toolkit

Municipal ordinance resources for policy makers to enhance enforcement of potentially illicit massage establishments where sex trafficking occurs.

This toolkit contains all the documents the Mayor’s Office used to work with stakeholders to update Houston’s Massage Establishment Ordinance and make it easier for law enforcement to crack down on suspected sex traffickers operating illicit massage establishments. These establishments can act as fronts for human trafficking. Despite this, law enforcement can be denied entry when seeking to investigate due to loopholes in municipal ordinances. Houston City Council approved amendments expanded the definition to include those establishments that advertise using massage or other massage services. They also incorporated state regulations concerning right of access into the ordinance, making it easier for officers to write and obtain a warrant in municipal court. Examine the toolkit to see what changes you can make to strengthen your massage establishment ordinances or adopt one if your municipality does not have one.

Thomson Reuters Institute

Human trafficking toolkits

These toolkits contain resources, tools, and information for organizations collaborating in public and private partnerships to combat human trafficking.