Petition to Support SB 183 The Enact Expanding Human Trafficking Justice Act
The path to healing after surviving a human trafficking situation is long and paved with many barriers. Often, victims of trafficking are arrested in situations that should have been met with compassion and help. This leaves them with a criminal record that provides yet another barrier to finding stable housing and securing a job.
Senator Kunze (R-16) and Senator Fedor (D-11) have introduced SB 183 The Enact Expanding Human Trafficking Justice Act, to expand Ohio's criminal record expungement process to allow for more more survivors of human trafficking to have certain crimes cleared from their record.
Survivors are often charged with crimes they were forced to commit when they were being trafficked. According to the Survivor Reentry Project, labor traffickers can benefit from forcing a victim to commit illegal acts involving drugs and weapons to trespassing and identity theft. Survivors of labor trafficking could also have criminal records related to possessing false identification documents or committing financial crimes, at the direction of their trafficker.
Currently without SB 183, survivors of labor trafficking are left out of the expungement process because qualifying for expungement requires a charge of prostitution and or loitering, which most labor trafficking survivors do not have. Survivors often find themselves faced with the stigma from society due to their criminal record. SB 183 could help to reduce this stigma and open pathways of success for more survivors.
SB 183 is currently in the Ohio Senate Judiciary Committee. With your signature, you can help the survivors of human trafficking break down society’s stigma and help them wipe their record clean.