New Orange County Ordinances Provide Lifeline For Victims

Human trafficking continues to be a serious problem throughout Florida, particularly Orange County. In fact, it is the third highest state for reported human-trafficking cases; trailing behind Texas and California.

In an effort to combat sex trafficking, Orange County commissioners recently passed an ordinance which will initially require strip clubs and massage parlors to display warning signs which display the hotline for the National Human Trafficking Resource Center.  It is the hopes of some that the ordinance will at some point expand to include the same signage requirement for motels located on Orange Blossom Trail; a location where it is believed many of the victims reside. The ordinance will take effect Feb. 1, 2016.

The focus at this time is geared toward adult entertainment clubs and massage parlors, as it is alleged that such locations are often “recruitment centers” for human traffickers. However, victim advocates who endorsed the new ordinance were careful not to accuse the business owners of such venues of contributing to the problem. Instead, they stress that this effort is being made in order to provide a resource to victims to seek help.

While human trafficking rings continue to be a problem, it is very important that law enforcement agencies follow the laws surrounding proper arrest, search and seizure. If you or someone you know has been falsely accused of a being involved in a crime, such as human trafficking, it is important that you consult with an attorney right away to ensure that your rights are being protected.