It’s both a worldwide epidemic and a billion-dollar industry — human trafficking.
Alabama lawmakers say they are taken major steps to combat it.
Lawmakers feel human trafficking is such a problem here in Alabama— there are several pieces of legislation dealing with the issue. A big part of the strategy is raising awareness.
Human trafficking is defined by the Department of Homeland Security as the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act.
Representative Merika Coleman sponsored several human trafficking bills.
“What we’re trying to do is provide education to industries that can be the first responders when it comes to human trafficking,” Coleman said.
One of Coleman’s bills requires newly licensees commercial truck drivers to undergo industry-specific human trafficking training.
“Often time those traffic victims are at truck stops. They see and they recognize who the victims are,” Coleman said.
Another bill would increase fees for non-compliance for industries refusing to post human trafficking hotline and awareness posters.
This package of bills are now headed to Governor Kay Ivey for her signature.