Each year, the non-profit group Shared Hope International takes a comprehensive look at sex trafficking laws in each of the fifty states and grades them based on how well they’re designed to protect minors. The Protected Innocence Challenge Report Card hasn’t always been kind to Tennessee. In each of the last two years, the state received a “C”grade.
However, the General Assembly passed twelve new changes to the state’s sex trafficking laws during the last session. Among them, higher penalties for promoting the prostitution of a minor and the establishment of a Human Trafficking Task Force.
As a result, the annual report card rewarded the state with an “A”, one of only three states to receive an “A”. (Washington and Louisiana are the other two). The state’s rating of 93.5 was also the highest in the country.
The report, however, pointed out Tennessee still needs to create better protections for child victims and better tools for investigators and prosecutors.