Senator Ileana Garcia (R-Miami) filed Senate Bill 294, Public Records/Statewide Council on Human Trafficking, now referred to its respective committees, to increase the effectiveness of the work performed by the Florida Alliance to End Human Trafficking and protect the identity of individuals that support efforts to end human trafficking in Florida. Senator Garcia is scheduled to present SB 294 to the Senate Committee on Children, Families, and Elder Affairs on Tuesday, November 30, 2021, at 12:30 p.m.
“In order to end human trafficking, we must ensure that those who wish to support our efforts in Florida are not deterred due to the fear of disclosing personal information, and this bill aims to provide that protection,” said Senator Garcia. “I became a state senator to help defend and protect the most vulnerable in our community, and children being trafficked and abused deserve all the support we can provide.”
Senate Bill 294 exempts from public records requirements the personal identifying information of a donor or prospective donor to the Florida Alliance to End Human Trafficking who wish to remain anonymous. The bill also provides an exemption from notice requirements for specified meetings with said donors or prospective donors who wish to remain anonymous.
Senate Bill 294 provides that these actions are a public necessity in order to enhance and encourage private support for the efforts to end human trafficking in Florida. The bill provides a sunset clause that will stand until October 2, 2027, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.
The Florida Alliance to End Human Trafficking is a nonprofit organization created by the Florida Legislature to provide funding, support and assistance to the statewide effort to end human trafficking. In July of this year, Senator Garcia was appointed by President Simpson to the Florida Alliance to End Human Trafficking, Board of Directors, serving in a volunteer capacity.
Florida ranks third in the United States in human trafficking cases reported and second for labor trafficking cases reported, according to the National Human Trafficking Hotline.
Suspected human trafficking and exploitation activity should be reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline via phone at 1-888-373-7888 or by texting “BEFREE” to 233733. All criminal activity should be reported directly to law enforcement.