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Joseph F. Rice School of Law

South Carolina Law Review symposium to focus on human trafficking

The South Carolina Law Review will host its 2020 symposium, "Human Trafficking and the Law" on Friday, February 21, at the University of South Carolina School of Law. The symposium will examine the effects of and legal avenues for combating human trafficking within the state of South Carolina as well as throughout the nation. Attendees will hear from experts on the complex aspects of both labor and sex trafficking and will leave with concrete actions they can employ to help combat trafficking within the state, throughout the nation, and around the world.

“Human trafficking knows no demographic,” says South Carolina Law Review Symposium Editor Taylor Voegel. “Victims of trafficking range from young, vulnerable children to independent and successful adults. Because of its broad nature, we felt it was imperative that we bring attention to the subject of human trafficking through this year’s Symposium.”

Part of the difficulty in combating human trafficking is the inability to recognize its varied forms. In 2018, the National Human Trafficking Hotline listed sex trafficking as the highest form of trafficking in South Carolina, with labor trafficking following closely behind. But even with this knowledge, it can still be extremely difficult to identify. Even if law enforcement can detect trafficking, victims often will not identify as victims, which makes prosecuting traffickers a difficult task. In 2017, the National Human Trafficking Hotline (NHTH) reported a 13% increase in identified human trafficking cases nationally. However, according to the South Carolina Human Trafficking Task Force, just 13 defendants were charged with human trafficking in 2018.

These issues as well as issues concerning the rehabilitation of victims and the implementation of statutes to punish traffickers and buyers while protecting victims are challenges to the legal community. These matters and more will be discussed during the South Carolina Law Review’s 2020 Symposium.

"Human Trafficking and the Law" will feature distinguished speakers such as South Carolina Attorney General, Alan Wilson, the Honorable Judge Michéle Forsythe, Ninth Judicial Circuit South Carolina Family Court Judge, and Mr. Elliott Daniels, Assistant United States Attorney. Panels will be comprised of professionals with varying backgrounds so as to provide different aspects of the anti-trafficking fight such as knowledge of trafficking entry, the cycle of abuse, and forms of exiting a trafficking situation. A full list of speakers can be found at the South Carolina Law Review's website.

The event is approved for 6 hours of CLE credit. Tickets are $50 for those seeking CLE credit. While the symposium is FREE for anyone not seeking CLE credit, registration is still requested.

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