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S. 1532, No Human Trafficking on Our Roads Act

Floor Situation

On Tuesday, December 19, 2017, the House will consider S. 1532, the No Human Trafficking on Our Roads Act, under suspension of the rules. The bill was introduced on July 12, 2017, by Sen. John Thune (R-SD) and was referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. On September 14, 2017, the bill passed the Senate without amendment by Unanimous Consent.


Summary

S. 1532 disqualifies individuals from operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) for their lifetime if they used a CMV to commit a felony involving human trafficking.


Background

Current law prohibits an individual from operating a CMV if the individual is convicted of any of nine different enumerated offenses, including alcohol abuse, negligent manslaughter, and drug trafficking. The proposed legislation would add a felony involving a severe form of trafficking in persons to the list of disqualifying offenses. The disqualification would be for life.[1]

Human trafficking, particularly sex trafficking, is known to be present at commercially operated truck stops and State-operated rest areas throughout the United States. Given their remoteness and insulation from communities, these locations can be a convenient place for sex traffickers to operate with minimal concerns for detection. The frequent movement of victims aids traffickers both in maintaining control of the victims and avoiding law enforcement. For example, victims who work in fake massage businesses are often rotated between cities so they do not establish relationships and seek help. Other forms of human trafficking, such as labor trafficking, have a presence in the trucking industry as well.[2]

Nonprofit organizations like Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT) have made substantial progress in spreading awareness of areas where human trafficking and the trucking industry intersect. Their efforts have resulted in increased reporting of trafficking incidents by truckers, the eyes and ears of roads nationwide. For example, the Senate Commerce Committee heard testimony at a July 12, 2017, human trafficking hearing on how the trucking industry is an important part of the solution, including saving lives by identifying instances of human trafficking. Despite these important efforts, more can be done to combat human trafficking, and this bill would serve as an important deterrent measure, in addition to penalizing traffickers.[3]


Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that implementing S. 1532 would have no significant effect on the federal budget. It estimates that implementing the provisions of the bill would cost less than $500,000 over the 2018-2022 period; such spending would be subject to the availability of appropriated funds. S. 1532 would not affect direct spending or revenues.


Staff Contact

For questions or further information please contact Jake Vreeburg with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 2-1374.


[1] See Senate Report 115-188 at 1.
[2] Id.
[3] Id.

115th Congress