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Human Trafficking Task Force

The Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce our strategic partnership with the Circuit 1 Human Trafficking Task Force through the Chamber Foundation.

In 2014, House Bill 7141, which promotes the development of identification and assessment tools to assess potential victims of human trafficking, was passed by the Florida Legislature. The bill required DCF and other lead agencies to participate in local task forces, coalitions, or similar organizations to work in coordination to local responses in human trafficking. These task forces work in conjunction with the Statewide Council on Human Trafficking.

The Circuit 1 Human Trafficking Task Force is focused on continuing to enhance partnerships with community-based organizations, businesses, state and local agencies as well as all levels of law enforcement. "The cohesiveness of these relationships will enable us to be proactive in recognizing human trafficking through prevention, allow a therapeutic response to these unique victims, and help seek justice through the courts by prosecuting the traffickers for their egregious acts. As one task force acting in unison, we can make a positive impact on these victims and our communities." - Task Force Chair, Gretchen Busbee

Currently, at least twenty-five business industries are required by the state of Florida to receive annual human trafficking training, including every school district in the state. Through this partnership, the Chamber will be able to offer this training and education as a member benefit.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has shown its full support of this partnership stating, "Businesses confront a host of logistical, financial, legal, and cultural challenges to ensure that they do not make the problem worse. And the strategies of traffickers are constantly evolving. Actions on their face that may appear legitimate can merely be fronts that disguise trafficking. Companies with global operations and business partners develop detailed and effective programs to address human trafficking. Specifically, companies are concerned about labor trafficking, where individuals perform work through the use of force, fraud, or coercion. Businesses, like Walmart and UPS, have proved to be an invaluable resource for combating this problem." They have formed a national campaign to eradicate human trafficking by partnering with A21, a global anti-trafficking organization.

The task force meets quarterly and has opportunities for involvement in various initiatives and campaigns through their subcommittees.

For more information on involvement please email or call 850.471.8481 ext. 242.