NAtional and VIrginia State
Initiatives to PREVENT and


VIRGINIA SENATE BILL 259 passed in 2012 requires the Board of Education, with assistance from the Department of Social Services, to provide awareness and training materials for local school division staff on human trafficking, including strategies for the prevention of trafficking of children.

2012 VIRGINIA PTA RESOLUTION: "Multiple incidents of child trafficking have been reported in recent years throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia resulting in numerous convictions of perpetrators.."

2013 BRIEF: Laying the Foundation for Virginia's Coordinated Response to Human Trafficking. Written to protect Virginia's citizens through prevention and awareness, services for victims, and the prosecution of traffickers. Written by the Governor, Office of the Secretary of Public Safety, and the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services.

FEDERAL BILL HR 4980: Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act of 2014. Requires states to develop policies and procedures to identify, document, screen, and determine children under the child welfare agency's care and supervision, who are victims of, or at risk of, sex trafficking. They must report children in their care identified as sex trafficking victims to law enforcement. They must report the number of victims of sex trafficking to the DHHS who will in turn report these numbers to members of Congress and make it public policy.

VIRGINIA SENATE BILL 1188 & HOUSE BILL 1964. In March 2015, Virginia passes its first stand-alone anti-trafficking laws, 15 years after the passage of the TVPA. It is the last state in the Continental U.S. to do so.

THE JUSTICE FOR VICTIMS TRAFFICKING ACT of 2015 addresses the demand side of sex trafficking by prohibiting the patronizing or soliciting of commercial sex or benefiting from these activities. This law makes traffickers and buyers equally culpable.

VIRGINIA HOUSE BILL 2282: Passed in 2017, this bill, effective July 1, 2017, requires the Virginia Board of Education to develop guidelines for training school counselors, school nurses and other relevant school staff on the prevention of trafficking of children.

VIRGINIA SENATE BILL 725: Effective July 1, 2018, Requires local departments of health, the Department of Transportation, each rest area in the Commonwealth, and certain health care facilities to post notice of the existence of a human trafficking hotline to alert possible witnesses or victims of human trafficking to the availability of a means to report crimes or gain assistance.

VIRGINIA SENATE BILL 1206: Makes it harder for defendants facing charges for human trafficking to be released on bail bond. Human Trafficking now joins the rankings of murder, rape, and robbery.

June 2018: CDC Adds New Human Trafficking Data Collection Fields for Health Care Providers. Health care providers and hospitals who are seeing an increase in human trafficking cases now have ICD-10-CM codes to adequately differentiate victims of human trafficking from other abuse victims.

October 2018: New recommendations from the Virginia State Crime Commission on how to tackle sex trafficking and exploitation of children. “It’s alarming. it’s a big problem and it’s bigger than most of us realize,” ~ Del. Paul Krizek (D - District 44). “In order to address the root causes of sex trafficking, Virginia needs to move beyond the law enforcement response,” ~ Colin Drabert, the Deputy Director of the commission.

The Family First Prevention Services Act, or simply FAMILY FIRST, goes into effect October 2019. It reforms the federal child welfare funding streams, allowing these funds to be used to provide services to families who are at risk of entering the child welfare system. These funds can be used for PREVENTION EFFORTS for families at risk of having their children removed.

SOAR to Health and Wellness Act of 2018 passes! This bill directs the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to establish a program to train health care providers and other related providers to: 1) identify potential human trafficking victims, 2) work with law enforcement to report and facilitate communication with such victims, 3) refer victims to social or victims service agencies or organizations, 4) provide such victims with coordinated care tailored to their circumstances, and consider integrating this training with existing training programs.