UPDATE: Governor Tom Wolf signed all three bills – HB 246, HB 843 and HB 1147 – into law on Wednesday, June 30, 2021.

June 25, 2021                 

HARRISBURG, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference commended PA Senate members for today’s passage of three bills designed to fight human trafficking. The PCC supports these measures in its on-going efforts to tackle the problem.

“Human trafficking is a scourge that not only still exists, but thrives all around us,” said Eric Failing, the Executive Director of the PCC. “These bills combine to form a strong package of penalties, treatment and youth protection that we believe will help to stop human traffickers and their recruiters.”

The three bills that passed today will now go to the Governor’s desk for his signature. They are:

  • HB 246 by Rep. Natalie Mihalek (R-Allegheny, Washington), which would offer protections for victims of human trafficking in criminal proceedings against alleged perpetrators
  • HB 843 by Rep. David Rowe (R-Snyder, Union), which would require that human trafficking offenses be considered in a parent’s bid for child custody
  • HB 1147 by Rep. Valerie Gaydos (R-Allegheny), which would require sex offender training for those convicted of human trafficking

“Human trafficking is a growing problem, but legislation like this will certainly help in many aspects of the problem,” Failing said. “It was encouraging to see near-unanimous support for these bills in both the House and Senate.”

The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference is based in Harrisburg and is the public affairs arm of PA’s Catholic bishops.