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Politics and Policy

#NVLeg: Krasner Pushes For Statewide Human Trafficking Plan/Task Force

Assemblywoman Krasner stands next to a member of the legislative staff and signs her name on a tablet. They are standing near the entry way into the Nevada Assembly.
(David Calvert/The Nevada Independent)
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Assemblywoman Lisa Krasner signs electronic paperwork inside the Legislature on Monday, March 15, 2021 in Carson City, Nev.

Two hundred thirty-nine human trafficking cases were reported in Nevada in 2019. That’s according to the latest statistics from the National Human Trafficking Hotline. Over the past decade, law enforcement officials in Northern and Southern Nevada have worked to crack down on this modern-day slavery. And lawmakers are considering a proposal that may help secure new federal funding opportunities to aid trafficking survivors. KUNR’s Paul Boger spoke with Republican Assemblywoman Lisa Krasner about her measure.

    

PAUL BOGER: What does the bill do specifically?

LISA KRASNER: So, AB143 does two things. First, it creates a statewide plan on human trafficking for human trafficking victims — services and resources. And the second thing it does is create a statewide task force for human trafficking victims. And the purpose of having a statewide plan for human trafficking victims and a statewide task force for human trafficking victims is that currently, we have regional groups. We have a regional group in the South and a regional group in the North. We don't have a group at all in the rurals, and this would really facilitate coordination, communication and cooperation among the different groups in the state. So that they're all communicating with each other and sharing information.

And they would have a plan, a statewide plan, with resources for human trafficking victims. The resources would include medical, psychological, housing, education, job training, childcare, victim's compensation, legal and other services to victims of human trafficking. Developing strategies to increase awareness about human trafficking throughout the state and the services that are available to victims of human trafficking among state and local agencies. Social services [and] public and private agencies that may provide services to victims of human trafficking would also be listed. So this would be a website, a website that is available to anyone in this state, a one-stop-shop with all resources available to human trafficking victims.

BOGER: You are introducing an amendment to this legislation. It changes these programs and these things that you want, this one-stop-shop of programs services. It changes that from a requirement to an ask. It removes the guarantee of these services. Why make that move?

KRASNER: Nevada is working on a deficit. Because of COVID-19, many businesses closed down and many people lost their jobs. So the state doesn't have the money in its coffers that it used to have. In an effort to make sure that this bill passed, we changed the bill and amended the must to a may so that these services for human trafficking victims will be provided as we get the money as a state.

BOGER: This is not the first time you've introduced legislation about human trafficking or sexual assault or abuse. This has been an ongoing theme for you as you enter your third term here. Why is this so important to you?

KRASNER: Well, it's important to me and I think it's important to many people that people are aware that there are people who are victims of human trafficking. That there are people who experienced domestic violence, that there are people who feel like they were raped and there's no justice in the world because it happened as they were a child. I just feel like it's important that victims feel like the doors of the courtroom are open and they can go and have some justice for what happened to them.

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