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      The Anti-Human trafficking Bill:

      Anti-human trafficking bill would hold repeat violators accountable Hotels and other public lodging establishments have been caught skirting anti-human trafficking requirements more than 14,000 times since a 2019 law was passed.

      But no one, not even a business repeatedly offending, has ever had to pay for it, a Sun Sentinel investigation found.

      Senate Democratic Leader Lauren Book is looking to change that.

      Book introduced a bill (SB 692) that would close a loophole in the law that Book got passed in 2019. Her proposal would make it so that administrative fines are levied upon those who repeatedly get caught not posting information about the illegality of human trafficking or neglecting to properly train employees to recognize the signs of the crime.

      “It’s up to each and every one of us to get educated, to say something if we see something, and look out for one another as human beings,” Book said in a prepared statement. “Hotel operators must be even more aware and to do their fair share to prevent these horrific crimes.”

      Currently, businesses that fail to properly post the anti-human trafficking information or neglect to train their employees are given a 90-day cure period to come into compliance. Not complying after that, theoretically, is supposed to result in an administrative fine paid into the state’s Direct Support Organization that helps survivors.

      The Sun-Sentinel’s series, “Innocence Sold” published in November found that the state’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation had not fined one single establishment, despite more than 14,000 violations issued to 6,669 hotels and public lodging establishments. The paper found that more than 100 of the hotels had received more than six violations each.

      The 2019 law had called for fines of $2,000 a day until the business came into compliance. Book’s bill, which has not drawn a companion, specifically prohibits repeat offenders from taking advantage of the correction period that was intended for first-time offenders.

      “SB 692 will close this loophole and allow for only one singular 90-day cure period per business; any subsequent violation will immediately be subject to fines,” a release from Book’s office says.