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TN Committee advances bill that identifies convicted human traffickers

Republican legislation that would make it easier for law enforcement to identify individuals convicted of human trafficking advanced out of the Tennessee House Transportation Committee last week.

House Bill 2573 would require a person convicted of human trafficking to obtain a driver’s license or photo identification license that includes a designation on it that would enable authorities to identify their conviction.

State Rep. Clay Doggett, R-Pulaski, told members of the subcommittee on Tuesday that the bill gives law enforcement the opportunity to ask additional questions and further investigate in situations such as traffic stops.

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Tennessee laws define human trafficking as the sale of an adult for the purposes of commercial sex by means of force, fraud or coercion, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s (TBI) ITHasToStop outreach campaign. Any commercial sex act involving the sale of a child for the purposes of commercial sex is also considered human trafficking, regardless of the use of force, fraud or coercion.

Additional human trafficking information:

  • Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal industries in the world, just behind drug trafficking.
  • There are an estimated 27 million people worldwide currently enslaved by traffickers.
  • Every year, more than 1.2 million children are trafficked for the purpose of being sold for sex.
  • In Tennessee, an average of 85 minors are trafficked every month.
  • The average age of entry into sex trafficking is 15 years old.
  • Anyone who believes they may have witnessed trafficking or encountered a victim of trafficking should contact the Tennessee Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-855-55-TNHTH.

House Bill 2573 now moves on to the House Finance, Ways and Means Subcommittee for consideration. More information about the legislation can be found here.

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