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FLS Human Trafficking Legal Assistance Project

Award Information

Award #
15POVC-21-GG-04215-HT
Areas Served
Geographical Areas Served
  • Brevard County
  • Indian River County
  • Lake County
  • Marion County
  • Orange County
  • Osceola County
  • Putnam County
  • Seminole County
  • Sumter County
Indicates all geographic areas to which services are provided, excluding states. See States Served.
States Served
FL
Indicates all applicable states in which services are provided.
Location
Awardee County
FL
Congressional District
Status
Open
Funding First Awarded
2022
Total funding (to date)
$350,000

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $350,000)

Florida Legal Services (FLS) proposes a new three-year Human Trafficking Legal Assistance Project in Central Florida to expand and strengthen the critical legal assistance available to victims of human trafficking that can help them reenter society and obtain physical safety, housing, education, and employment. Through the project, FLS will develop its capacity to provide high-quality, trauma-informed, linguistically and culturally appropriate legal assistance to Central Florida’s human trafficking victims. The project will add a new, dedicated, qualified attorney in Central Florida to help victims with the myriad of legal issues that arise from their victimization, including injunctions for protection, immigration, public benefits, family law, consumer, and housing matters. The Project Attorney will be supervised by an experienced attorney with expertise in providing trauma-informed advocacy and immigration legal assistance for trafficking victims. The project will also develop a pro bono attorney panel to donate approximately 1,500 hours in support of the project, including mentoring project attorneys and providing legal assistance to human trafficking victims.

 

FLS will also develop relationships and partnerships with area service providers in order to create multidisciplinary teams to serve victims in a way that prevents them from becoming retraumatized. FLS will train area service providers and partners on the legal issues faced by trafficking victims so that they may identify and refer trafficking victims to the project. The project area is nine Central Florida counties (Brevard, Indian River, Lake, Marion, Orange, Osceola, Putnam, Seminole, and Sumter) with high concentrations of groups particularly vulnerable to human trafficking. They include children in the child welfare and juvenile detention systems, people working in industries such as hospitality and massage parlors, immigrant and migrant agricultural workers, persons with disabilities, persons with substance abuse issues, persons with limited English proficiency, and persons living in poverty. The proposed project will benefit all of these populations that are vulnerable to human trafficking by developing a new resource in the area to provide legal assistance when trafficking occurs. As a result of program capacity-building and partnership activities, FLS expects to provide legal assistance to at least 110 human trafficking victims during the project period.

Date Created: December 13, 2021