Introduced Version House Bill 4169 History

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Key: Green = existing Code. Red = new code to be enacted

WEST virginia legislature

2018 regular session


House Bill 4169

By Delegates Barrett, Shott, Overington, Moore, Kessinger, Lane, Queen, Upson, Lovejoy, Canestraro, and Miller, R.

[Introduced January 17, 2018; Referred
to the Committee on the Judiciary.]

A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §15-9A-4, relating to requiring certain establishments and facilities to post human trafficking assistance notices; establishing posting notices and contents of notice; directing the Director of the Division of Justice and Community Services to administer the program; authorizing state agents to give notice of violations; providing for criminal penalties for failure to comply with posting of notices once given notice of lawful duty to post; and defining terms.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:    

article 9a. Division of Justice and Community Services.

15-9A-4. Human Trafficking Assistance Notices.

(a) For the purpose of assisting persons who are subject to human trafficking to obtain help and services, the following businesses and facilities shall post a notice as provided herein in English, Spanish, and any other language deemed appropriate by the director, in each public restroom for the business or establishment and either in a conspicuous place near the public entrance of the business or establishment or in another location in clear view of the public and employees where similar notices are customarily posted:

(1) All locations licensed by the Alcohol Beverage Control Commission pursuant to chapter sixty of this code to allow consumption of alcoholic beverages, and exotic entertainment facilities as defined pursuant to §60-4-23 of this code;

(2) Primary airports;

(3) Passenger rail stations;

(4) Bus stations;

(5) Locations where gasoline and diesel fuel are sold;

(6) Emergency rooms within general acute care hospitals;

(7) Urgent care centers;

(8) Farm labor contractors and day haulers;

(9) Privately operated job recruitment centers;

(10) Rest areas located along interstate highways in this state operated by the Department of Highways;

(11) Hotels;

(12) Businesses and establishments that offer massage or bodywork services by a person who is not a massage therapist licensed pursuant to §30-37-1 et seq. of this code;

(13) Any other business determined by legislative rule of the director as an effective public location to provide effective notice to victims of human trafficking; and

(b) The director shall develop a notice that complies with the requirements of this subsection and make the notice available for download on its Internet website. The notice shall be at least 8 ½ inches by 11 inches in size, printed in a 16 point font in English, Spanish, and any other language deemed appropriate by the director, and state the following:

“Are you or someone you know being sold for sex or made/forced to work for little or no pay and cannot leave? Call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center at 1-888-373-7888 for help. All victims of slavery and human trafficking have rights and are protected by international, federal, and state law.

The hotline is:

(1) Anonymous and confidential;

(2) Available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week;

(3) Able to provide help, referral to services, training, and general information;

(4) Accessible in one hundred seventy languages;

(5) Operated by a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization; and

(6) Toll free.”

(c)  Any law-enforcement officer, representative of the state or a county health department, representative of the State Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission, representative of the Division of Labor, or other state representative inspecting a business or establishment or otherwise lawfully acting under his or her state authority, may notify, in writing, any business or establishment that it has failed to comply with the provisions of this section and if it does not correct the violation within thirty days from the date of receipt of the notice, the owner shall be charged with a violation of this section and upon conviction is guilty of the misdemeanor offense and may be punished by a fine of not more than $500.  Upon a second or subsequent conviction, the owner is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $5,000. The notice required by this subsection may be hand delivered to the noncomplying business or establishment or mailed to the address of the business or establishment.

(d) For the purposes of this section, and unless a different meaning is plainly required:

(1) “Agricultural products” means raising, growing, harvesting, or storing of crops; feeding, breeding, or managing livestock, equine, or poultry; producing or storing feed for use in the production of livestock;

(2) “Day hauler” means any person who is employed by a farm labor contractor to transport, or who, for a fee, transports, by motor vehicle, workers to render personal services in connection with the production of any farm products to, for, or under the direction of a third person; Provided, That such term shall not include a person who produces agricultural products;

(3) “Farm labor contractor” means any person who, for a fee, employs workers to render

personal services in connection with the production of any farm products to, for, or under the direction of a third person, or who recruits, solicits, supplies, or hires workers on behalf of an employer engaged in the growing or producing of farm products, and who, for a fee, provides in connection therewith one or more of the following services: furnishes board, lodging, or transportation for those workers; supervises, times, checks, counts, weighs, or otherwise directs or measures their work; or disburses wage payments to such persons: Provided, That such term shall not include a person who produces agricultural products;

(4) “Hotel” means any establishment which offers overnight accommodations to the public for hire;

(5) “Primary airport” shall have the same meaning as set forth in 49 U.S.C. section 58 47102(16); and

(6) “Truck stop” means a privately owned and operated facility that provides food, fuel, shower or other sanitary facilities, and lawful overnight truck parking.


NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to require posting of a notice in designated locations of a hotline available for people to call to report human trafficking to be posted in areas where persons are subject to human trafficking; authorizing state representatives to give notices; and establishing penalties for failure to post.

Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.

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