Clymer’s Bill Aimed at Advertising National Human Trafficking Resources Hotline Gains House Approval
10/3/2012
HARRISBURG – Legislation aimed at extending help to those ensnared in the web of human trafficking is one step closer to becoming law, thanks to passage of a bill in the House of Representatives today that would establish and advertise a National Human Trafficking Resource Hotline in the Commonwealth, said state Rep. Paul Clymer (R-Bucks), author of the legislation.

Human trafficking is when individuals are forced or coerced against their will into labor or sexual exploitation. It is the second largest criminal industry in the world, with an estimated 27 million people in modern-day slavery around the globe.

“I have been advocating for this legislation for several years now, and am pleased to have it approved overwhelmingly in the House,” said Clymer. “I look forward to having it make its way through the Senate and, hopefully, onto the governor’s desk so that we may begin to take greater action in helping the victims of this heinous crime.”

Clymer’s legislation would mandate the advertisement of the National Human Trafficking Resource Center Hotline in various establishments across the state where victims are most likely to be found.

Establishments required to post the hotline would include: 

        • Massage parlors, spas or a similar enterprise. 
        • Restaurants, bars, taverns, hotels or clubs that have a valid liquor, malt or brewed 
            beverage license. 
        • Adult entertainment enterprises. 
        • Hotels or motels found to be a drug-related nuisance or common nuisance. 
        • Airports, train stations and bus stations. 
        • Welcome centers and rest areas operated by PennDOT.

Those establishments that fail to post signage would be subject to civil penalties.

“This is a crime that is taking place each and every day across America, as well as here in Pennsylvania, and the problem is that it is such an underground operation that it is hard to identify and reach those who have become victims of this crime,” said Clymer. “My bill is not designed to malign these businesses; it is simply a matter of fact that these types of venues are known to be places where a victim of human trafficking might frequent. Advertisement of the hotline will best be served through the cooperation of these industries in helping to alert people as to how to get help and even report incidences of human trafficking.”

The hotline directs people to a national, 24-hour, seven-day-a-week, toll-free call center that refers callers to local agencies that can provide a range of comprehensive services, including crisis intervention.

House Bill 235, known as the National Human Trafficking Resource Center Hotline Notification Act, now goes to the Senate for consideration.

State Representative Paul Clymer
145th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Tricia Lehman
tlehman@pahousegop.com
717.772.9840
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