Louisiana Strengthens Anti-Human Trafficking Laws

Louisiana’s laws against human trafficking are getting tougher, and victims’ services are being highlighted, under several bills that trafficking victims’ support groups say are an international model.

One bill creates harsher punishments for human trafficking and related crimes, increases protections for victims and requires training for law enforcement to recognize trafficking offenders and victims.

Another new law will allow courts to create specialized divisions to handle human trafficking cases. Supporters say that will help judges to better steer victims to support services, rather than jail for drug crimes or prostitution.

Governor Jindal also signed a requirement that women seeking an abortion receive information about the illegality of coerced abortions and services available to human-trafficking victims and a bill mandating abortion clinics post the National Human Trafficking Resource center hotline.

Clemmie Greenlee, a victim of human trafficking who attended the bill signing, cried when Jindal wrote his signature on the first piece of legislation. “You just don’t understand, this governor making an announcement like this lifted decades of pain and hurt off of me,” said Greenlee, who works at Eden House, a New Orleans residential program for women who are victims of sex trafficking or other types of violence.

Learn more at Melina DeSlatte’s Houston Chronicle article: Jindal signs bills aimed at human trafficking.


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