On November 8th, Georgians will be voting on Amendment 2, below are some quick facts for you to understand what the bill means and what opposition it has.
Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund
“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow additional penalties for criminal cases in which a person is adjudged guilty of keeping a place of prostitution, pimping, pandering, pandering by compulsion, solicitation of sodomy, masturbation for hire, trafficking of persons for sexual servitude, or sexual exploitation of children and to allow assessments on adult entertainment establishments to fund the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund to pay for care and rehabilitative and social services for individuals in this state who have been or may be sexually exploited?”
A yes vote will provide funding for restorative services such as medical treatment, housing and counseling. The funding will come from new fines that will be placed on those convicted of crimes such as sex trafficking. There will also be fines on the adult entertainment industry especially places that serve alcohol and promotes nudity. The charges on individuals with be $2500 on top of what the court decides to fine them with. And for businesses it will be either 1% of their gross annual income from the year before or $5000 whichever is greater.
Georgia state senator Renee Unterman made her case saying that strip clubs promote sex and the selling of it so there is a direct link between the clubs and sex trafficking which makes it okay to tax these businesses.
If the amendment is passed non profits and faith based organizations will be able to apply for these funds so they can provide these services.
It will rack up about 2 million dollars to provide services for these children. The services includes talking to a psychiatrist, psychologists, counselors and social workers.
Those opposed to this bill object to charging law-abiding strip clubs. Why should strip clubs be the target and not other venues that sex traffickers are known to use like truck stops, hotels and various websites.
Some say that it will be expanding the welfare state because it includes children who voluntarily involve themselves in sexual activities, these children will be able to receive medical attention and housing. So in a sense “they will be awarded for bad behavior”.
It will empower the larger businesses, shut down the smaller businesses but will not prevent children from being exploited.
If you have any comments or anything to add let me know!