February 4th Post

Utilizing one example from political current events, talk about a social policy or proposed social policy that was effected by the political process.

On Sunday, 2 February 2014, the popular football contest NFL Super Bowl XLVIII was played in New Jersey. Recent media publicity for the football game has also brought attention to a connected issue of the rise in sex trafficking crimes due to the game. Sex trafficking is also endemic in Georgia. Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) officials estimate that hundreds of children, and others, are being held as sex slaves in Atlanta, which has “one of the worst reputations for the crime in the country” (GBI, 2011). The GBI (2011) notes that there are twelve, now thirteen, applicable Georgia state laws regarding sex trafficking.

Enacted in 2013, the Crimes Against the Person HB 141 amends Title 16 and is the most recent legislation of the Georgia General Assembly efforts to address local sex trafficking issues. The Act obliges certain types of businesses to make publically available a sign with information, including a toll-free telephone number for assistance, to help victims of human trafficking (Kelbaugh & Varner, 2013). Offense fines are also included in the Act. The Human Trafficking Notice can be found on the GBI website at gbi.georgia.gov/sites/gbi.georgia.gov/files/related_files/document/human%20trafficking%20post%209-13-13.pdf .

In reviewing the political process for Crimes Against the Person HB 141, Kelbaugh and Varner (2013) show that the process did somewhat change the outcome. The House had two readings in late January of 2013 before its committee assignment. The House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee made several practical changes introduced in a Committee substitute report. The Committee substitute report: assigned who was to write the notice, defined the phrase “adult entertainment establishment” and included those businesses in the requirement, set a business posting date, and added the exclusion of businesses offering massages by licensed massage therapists. Other changes specify law enforcement involvement and fines for violations. On 27 February 2013, the House adopted the Committee substitute with a one hundred seventy-one to one vote.

The political process for Crimes Against the Person HB 141 continued in the Senate. Kelbaugh and Varner (2013) observed that the Judiciary Non-Civil Committee made very few, minor, changes to HB 141. HB 141 was read three times before the Senate passed the Committee substitute on 21 March 2013 by a vote of forty-seven to one.

Kelbaugh and Varner (2013) make note of the final stages in the political process for the Senate Committee substitute of Crimes Against the Person HB 141. The Senate Committee substitute was sent to the House for review and voting. This was passed in the House by a vote of one hundred sixty-eight to two on 25 March 2013. Governor Nathan Deal then reviewed and signed the Act on 6 May 2013.

References

Crimes Against the Person HB 141, O.C.G.A. § 16-5-47 (new) (2013).

Georgia Bureau of Investigation (2013). Human Trafficking Notice. Retrieved from gbi.georgia.gov/sites/gbi.georgia.gov/files/related_files/document/human%20trafficking%20post%209-13-13.pdf

Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Human Trafficking Unit (2011). Human trafficking: Modern day slavery [PowerPoint slides]. Retrieved from dfcs.dhs.georgia.gov/sites/dfcs.dhs.georgia.gov/files/related_files/site_page/BST%20Human%20Trafficking%20Workshop.pdf

Georgia General Assembly, Legislation (2014). 2013-2014 Regular Session –HB 141: Kidnapping; certain businesses and establishments post a model notice to enable persons who are the subject of human trafficking to obtain help and services; require. Retrieved from http://www.legis.ga.gov/legislation/en-US/display/20132014/HB/141

Kelbaugh, W. & Varner, A. (2013). Crimes against the person HB 141. Georgia State University Law Review, 30(1), article 7. Retrieved from: scholarworks.gsu.edu/gsulr/vol30/iss1/7

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