The State of Texas took major steps to fight human trafficking in 2003 by passing one of the first state-level anti-trafficking laws in the United States. First, the Texas Legislature enacted Chapter 20A of the Penal Code which defined “forced labor or services” and “traffic[king]” as crimes, and created felony offenses for persons who knowingly trafficked a person with the intent to force them to perform labor or services. At the same time, regional task forces and other local collaborations were established across the state to identify human trafficking victims, create service response systems, and bring traffickers to justice.
In 2009, the State of Texas took further steps creating the Texas Human Trafficking Prevention Task Force. The attorney general chairs the task force, which issues the “Texas Response to Human Trafficking” report prior to each legislative session.
In 2013, the Texas Legislature passed legislation combining all of the recommendations presented in the Texas Human Trafficking Prevention Task Force’s 2012 report. The Legislature also added victims of human trafficking to the list of eligible participants in the Office of the Attorney General’s Address Confidentiality Program (ACP). Under the ACP, the Office of the Attorney General provides a substitute post office box address that a participant may use in place of their actual residential, business, or school address.
The 2012 and 2014 Reports can be found here:
The Texas Young Lawyers created SOS – Slavery Out of the Shadows. This film seeks to educate the public about the facts and faces of human trafficking.
Beth Klein Boulder Attorney was featured in this film with many other change agents in Texas and trafficking survivors