SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – California Gov. Jerry Brown is approving legislation decriminalizing prostitution for minors and taking other steps to make life after human trafficking easier for those forced into it.

The Democratic governor announced Monday he signed SB1322 to ban police from charging people under the age of 18 with prostitution.

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He also signed bills allowing people to defend themselves against additional criminal charges or records if they were coerced to commit an offense as a human trafficking victim.

Others will raise the age from 13 to 15 that kids can testify outside a courtroom in human trafficking cases, protect victims’ names from disclosure and mandate they have access to county services.

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In vetoing financial assistance for sex-crime victims, Brown says the state budget includes $19 million next year for similar services.

 

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