Recently signed North Carolina budget provides lifeline to victims of human trafficking

Posted at 12:16 PM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-14 12:16:16-05

NORTH CAROLINA - The recently signed into law budget for North Carolina is offering new resources and policy changes to assist victims of human trafficking.

"Human trafficking is all too prevalent in North Carolina. We have the means to both combat this criminal behavior and to help victims caught up in the vicious cycle of exploitation and coercion,” said Sen. Ted Alexander. “Our budget provides millions of dollars to organizations that help human trafficking victims transition to a better life.”

The budget has waived expunction costs for human trafficking victims, which now allows for survivors of human trafficking who were cited for participating in sex work to clear their records at no cost.

Funding from the budget totaling $3.2 million has been allocated to nonprofit organizations that seek to help victims of human trafficking with services like case management, education, and employment assistance.

An additional $1.1 million was also allocated towards strengthening existing services that help victims of human trafficking recover and transition to a better life.

The budget also provided $4.4 million to the state's Human Trafficking Commission to develop and implement a grant program for economic assistance and other services to human trafficking victims, plus $4.8 million for capital improvements to agencies that assist victims of sexual assault.

The budget provides for eight sworn law enforcement officers within the State Bureau of Investigation that will be focused on human trafficking enforcement.