Effective January 1, 2016, The Human-Trafficking Resource Center Notice Act will assist victims by requiring businesses and establishments to post the National Human-Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) hotline number. The specific business or other establishment must post a notice that complies with the requirements of this Act in a conspicuous place near the public entrance of the establishment or in another conspicuous location in clear view of the public and employees where similar notices are customarily posted. This mandated notice is available on the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) website for downloading in several languages.
IDHS, in cooperation with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office and the Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL), is working to increase visibility regarding the hotline, foster awareness of human trafficking among the general public, provide a wide range of resources for victims seeking assistance and offer a means by which law enforcement can be notified of tips.
Under the Act, IDHS is tasked with creating the Notice and IDOL is required, in the course of regulating a business or establishment, to determine if there are violations and to notify businesses and establishments of non-compliance. The Attorney General’s Office is charged with representing IDOL and the enforcement of any civil penalties.
IDHS, in partnership with the Immigrants and Workers’ Rights Practice Group Legal Assistance Foundation (LAF); Heartland Alliance; the Salvation Army STOP-IT Program; and Metropolitan Family Services Legal Aid Society developed the mandated notice for downloading.
“The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) is pleased to continue working with our partners on the joint effort in the fight against Human Trafficking. Human Trafficking exploits the victim for forced labor or sexual exploitation, or both. Victims of Human Trafficking often do not know where to turn to ask for help,” stated IDHS Secretary-designate, James Dimas. “This bill focuses on helping victims to safely access help and services by requiring certain businesses to post the National Human Trafficking Resource Center Hotline number. This hotline is both anonymous and confidential to the victim or someone with information about a potential trafficking situation,” he continued.
“Human trafficking is modern day slavery,” said Attorney General Lisa Madigan. “Illinois has some of the nation’s strongest laws to combat these heinous crimes, and we will do anything we can to ensure victims are supported with critical resources to help them recover.”
“The Human-Trafficking Resource Center Notice Act is a proactive effort to not only raise awareness in the workplace, but also educate the public on this very important issue,” said IDOL Director Hugo Chaviano. “Reaching out to the community so they know of available resources is a key initiative in the fight against human trafficking.”