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InWashington became the first state to criminalize human trafficking. Since then, every state has enacted laws establishing criminal penalties for traffickers seeking to profit from forced labor or sexual servitude. State laws include a wide variety of activities under their definition of trafficking.
Differences in trafficking definitions are critical to identifying who has criminal Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee. Most commonly, trafficking activities are defined as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons for the purpose of exploitation.
Some jurisdictions have expanded their definition of trafficking by including activities like purchasing, benefitting or profiting. In order to obtain a trafficking conviction, state laws, in most instances, require that prosecutors prove traffickers compelled their victims into labor or sexual servitude. The majority of laws include the elements force, fraud and coercion, but their definition can vary greatly from state to state. For example, in some states, their definition focuses primarily on the use of physical force.
Other states more broadly include psychological Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee, financial threats, legal harassment and drug addiction. Trafficking actions in Wisconsin's statute include debt bondage, extortion, fraud and deception.
State trafficking laws address many factors and circumstances that can enhance the criminal penalties for trafficking crimes. Laws for example, can as more severe or additional penalties for trafficking when the crimes are committed against vulnerable populations like children, undocumented immigrants and people with a mental illness, or are effectuated through aggravating circumstances like the use of violence, branding or drug addiction.
Utah raises the penalty for human trafficking from a second degree felony to a first degree felony when it in death or serious bodily harm, involves rape or sodomy, involves 10 or more victims, or involves a victim who is held against their will for longer than 30 days.
Some states have enacted measures that specifically address penalties that apply to a business entity if it is has committed, or has been used in committing, a human trafficking crime. Laws also create procedures for the dissolution of the business entity, as well as, establish additional fines. State laws vary on the criminal penalties they assess on people who purchase sex. Some states punish sex purchasers the same as traffickers, generally with felony level crimes, while others punish them with misdemeanors associated with paying for prostitution or solicitation.
A third option some states have taken is to as a middle-ground crime, usually being either a more severe version of solicitation, or a less severe form of human trafficking. Estimating how prolific trafficking crimes are in the U. Currently there is uneven data, particularity across state and local jurisdictions, concerning the extent to which state laws criminalizing trafficking have acted as an effective deterrent or been utilized in prosecutions.
The efforts states and the federal government have made to track trafficking investigation and prosecution data are provided in the reports below. State lawmakers have legislated several criminal protections and civil remedies for trafficking victims in the judicial system. Measures have provided immunity to, diversion from, and affirmative defenses against, criminal prosecution for actions victims were forced to commit by their traffickers. Laws additionally create mechanisms to seal, vacate or expunge criminal convictions and provide for civil standing and restitution procedures that enable survivors to recover financially from their traffickers.
Criminal protections for trafficked survivors have been implemented at different stages in the justice process. Lawmakers have also created mechanisms to help survivors recover financially from their traffickers. To prevent arrested victims from entering the justice system, state laws can provide for immunity from prosecution or diversion to rehabilitative services.
Many states apply these protections only to trafficked youth, as they are considered the most vulnerable population. Laws also charge agencies with developing comprehensive plans for assisting trafficked youth once they are identified and diverted from the justice system.
Diversion options may require the admission of guilt, or entering a conditional plea. The majority of states enable trafficked victims to assert an affirmative defense to criminal charges they face as a result of actions they were forced to commit by their traffickers. An affirmative defense is evidence that, if found credible, negates criminal liability even if it is proved the defendant committed the acts at issue. Statutes differ in the crimes for which an affirmative defense can be raised, but many cover prostitution, loitering and solicitation.
Many trafficked survivors have criminal records as a result of actions they were forced to commit by their traffickers. At least 29 states have created procedures for survivors to expunge, vacate or seal criminal records related to being trafficked. However, many of these laws have specific provisions and processes and are limited to certain crimes. Washington provides survivors with procedures to vacate their prostitution convictions if it resulted from certain crimes committed against them.
The crimes are promoting commercial sexual abuse of a minor, promoting prostitution in the first degree or trafficking. When traffickers are convicted of their crimes, laws in many states require that they pay restitution to their victims. The goal of restitution in criminal cases is to address financially the harms done to a person in order to make them whole.
State restitution laws in trafficking cases may contribute to payment for medical and psychological services, housing, child care, property costs, repatriation and the cost of labor provided. State laws provide guidance on the civil suits survivors can bring against their traffickers.
These laws can establish in which court a survivor can file their suit, what sort of damages can be recovered actual damages, compensatory damages, punitive damages, injunctive relief, attorney costs and fees, treble damages, etc. State laws enable justice officials to seize the property and assets of individuals and business entities convicted of committing trafficking crimes.
Assets able to be seized can include profits, buildings and vehicles. States can direct funds specifically to victims of trafficking crimes via special funds or restitution, to government entities incurring costs of investigation or prosecution or to funds for general victim services.
CPL Laws Ch. Providing services to survivors of human trafficking is critical, as is the funding for those services. States provide many different types of services, from legal services to housing assistance, which differs state to state. In addition, the funding for these services varies greatly across states, with some setting up special funds to address human trafficking while others provide for targeted services in budget line items.
The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of establishes the 3P approach to addressing human trafficking encompassing prevention, protection, and prosecution. Since the concept has been expanded to include partnership, recognizing the need for multiple agency coordination in order to properly address the issue. Trafficking survivors require a range of different services, which vary depending on the specific needs of the individual survivor. Required services may include shelter, advocacy, health care, legal assistance, mental health services, or many others. For example, an Evaluation of Services for Domestic Minor Victims of Human Traffickingreleased indocumented the demographics of child trafficking survivors as well as the services provided by three grant-funded direct service providers in San Francisco, Chicago and New York City.
The report details what the client needs were at intake including:. Survivors of sex and labor trafficking face complex legal issues that often require expertise in many areas of the law, including criminal, civil, immigration law and more. For example, one survivor may need legal assistance in many, if not all, of the following areas:. Housing needs of trafficking victims vary, and service providers employ different options to meet the emergency, transitional, and long-term housing needs of their clients, including through a variety of emergency and transitional shelters as well as group and independent living options, working with landlords, housing authorities, and other partners.
Survivors, service providers, law enforcement, and other Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee cite housing as a top priority of victims of all forms of trafficking. The evaluation of services to domestic minor sex trafficking survivorscited above, also looked at what needs of the trafficking survivor were identified at intake.
It is important when providing services to victims of crime, particularly human trafficking survivors, to do so in a trauma-informed way. This includes recognizing the impact that prior trauma can have, identifying the s of trauma in clients and knowing how to respond in a way that does not re-traumatize. State legislation regarding services for human trafficking survivors varies greatly. Some states require an agency or commission to develop a plan for providing services to trafficking survivors, others include programs to provide services to survivors, child welfare population specific statutes, or other, more specific services such as immigration.
Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act requires states to identify youth most at risk of becoming child sex trafficking victims and provide services for them to prevent them from being Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee. See below for examples of how states have addressed the provision of services to human trafficking survivors. At least 22 states have created funds to pay for anti-trafficking efforts, including training of law enforcement and attorneys general and for the provision of services to survivors of human trafficking see map. States also generate funds for services by levying fines on sex traffickers and purchasers of commercial sex.
Trafficking in Persons Report: U. NarrativeU. Department of State, July For example, in Louisiana the crime of purchasing commercial sexual activity carries increased fines based on the of convictions and the age of the person from whom sex is being purchased. Examples of states that created statutory special funds to provide training and services are included in the map and the citations below.
The statutes vary from state to state. GeorgiaLouisiana and Oregon have funds that apply only to children who are survivors Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee sex trafficking. ArizonaCalifornia and Hawaii specifically mention that the fund is available to both child and adult survivors of sex and labor trafficking. The remainder are general to all survivors of human trafficking and may be applied broadly. Instead of providing a special fund, some states provide for specific services in line items of budget bills.
To appropriately respond to the crime of human trafficking, state policymakers believe coordination of anti-trafficking efforts among various state and federal agencies is key. Several states have enacted legislation creating statewide work groups, task forces, advisory groups and the like to better coordinate services between the criminal justice, juvenile justice and child welfare agencies.
In recent years, nearly every state has created a working group, task force, advisory group, initiative or the like, to promote and encourage the cooperation and coordination among law enforcement, justice departments, and child welfare agencies, in addition to other important stakeholders.
At least 26 states and Guam have enacted legislation creating a human trafficking task force, work group, study group or similar coordination effort. Eight of those states—Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri and Rhode Island—apply to sex trafficking only; the other states encompass both labor and sex trafficking.
Most generally address both adult and minor sex and labor trafficking. Others specify that they only address minor sex trafficking. These include the coordination of federal, state, local and tribal governments, child welfare agencies, social service providers, health and mental health, victim services, state and local courts responsible for child welfare and others to develop and implement successful interventions with vulnerable children and youth and to make recommendations for administrative and legislative changes.
In addition to the state requirements in the timeline below, a few requirements are placed on the U. While most of these requirements fall on the state child welfare agencies, several state legislatures have passed legislation to require the identification and screening of, as well as the provision of services to children affected, or at risk of being affected by sex trafficking, particularly foster youth.
This is an ongoing area of law and more states are introducing and enacting legislation each day. For up to date legislative tracking information, contact Meghan McCann, meghan. Child welfare agencies must report missing youth to law enforcement, within 24 hours, for entry into the National Crime Information Center and to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. Due to the covert nature of trafficking crimes, the public is often unaware that they can occur close to home, and that businesses in their neighborhood may benefit from, or be used as conduits for, sex and labor trafficking.
State actions to raise public awareness of trafficking, and mitigate its influence on commerce, include disseminating information on trafficking crimes, services and prevention efforts, and setting standards in certain industries for licensing, advertising, training and disclosure. Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia have laws that promote access to information about human trafficking through the use of the National Human Trafficking Hotline.
The hotline is a telephone and web service that members of the public can call to report suspected cases of trafficking, survivors can call for help, or interested persons can contact for trafficking information.
Laws require or encourage the dissemination of information about the hotline, charge state entities with creating educational information for awareness about the hotline and mandate certain business and facilities post information related to the hotline.
State laws addressing the hotline information either require it be posted in certain locations or encourage its dissemination. Laws also require state entities to develop s to promote information about the hotline. To the right is an example from Tennessee, where posting it is voluntary. Generally these entities have many other duties including coordinating state resources to provide services to trafficking Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee and implementing training protocols on trafficking for state employees. In addition, states also commemorate efforts against trafficking by granting special recognition during specific days and months.
Texas lawmakers, inenacted the Human Trafficking Prevention Business Partnershipto be operated by the secretary of state. Companies that voluntarily the partnership must adopt a zero tolerance policy on trafficking, ensure their employees comply with that policy, participate in public awareness campaigns, and develop best practices for combatting trafficking. Participating entities will receive a certificate of recognition from the secretary of state.
The partnership began accepting members in The goal of the law, as stated in the legislation, is to educate consumers so that they are not inadvertently supporting trafficking crimes, and can make market influencing purchase decisions with this information. California also requires their state agencies have sweatfree procurement policies.
Specifically, the law mandates all contractors who contract with state agencies for the procurement, or laundering, of apparel to certify that no work was provided through the use of forced labor or exploitation. The law requires the Department of Industrial Relations to create a contractor responsibility program and code of conduct to be ed by all bidders on state contracts.
The law does not apply to public works contracts. Certain industries have higher a reported of incidents of human trafficking abuses than others. In order to aid in anti-trafficking efforts for those businesses, some states have instituted requirements to professionals and set standards for the advertisement of their services.
Common professions required to receive human trafficking training include police and other first responders, judicial officials, school employees, medical professionals and social services workers. In addition, at least six states have expanded those training requirements to the private sector. Create .Women seeking sex Trade Tennessee
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Human Trafficking State Laws