Office of the Governor's Child Sex Trafficking Team June Newsletter

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Office of the Texas Governor, Child Sex Trafficking Team

Dear Partners:

What a session for anti-human trafficking work! The Texas legislative session, held every other year for 5 months/140 days, is always a bit of a whirlwind, and that was especially true this year in the midst of Covid and so many other urgent priorities. A total of 6,927 bills were filed between the House and Senate this session and 1,053 ultimately became law.

We are happy to report that among those new pieces of legislation are a number of provisions protecting children and strengthening our state’s response to human trafficking. Join us on July 15 for a legislative update webinar discussing some of these new laws and summarizing related laws. 

This month, instead of our usual Success Stories from grantees and partners, see the Texas Human Trafficking Prevention Task Force’s summary of legislative accomplishments. 

And, make sure to join us July 15th for a comprehensive review of new laws that will help us recognize, recover and support the healing of young survivors of exploitation, protect children and youth from victimized in the first place, and bring justice to exploiters.

Thanks for your tireless advocacy on these issues!


Monthly Webinar Series

Human Trafficking Updates from the 87th Legislative Session - July 15th from 1:00 - 2:30 PM.

The 87th Legislature’s regular session officially ended on May 31. Todd Latiolais, Prevention & Policy Administrator with the Governor’s Child Sex Trafficking Team, will provide an overview of new legislation impacting the issue of human trafficking.

Register for this Webinar


Recent: Business Doing Good: Engaging Businesses to Hire and Empower Survivors - June 10th

Shannon Deer and Cheryl Miller presented on an evidence-based economic empowerment model outlined in their new book, Business Doing Good: Engaging Women and Elevating Communities. This model is already gaining the attention of organizations and corporations, leading to partnerships that create employment opportunities with good wages and benefits for women overcomers. Access the webinar here. For more information about the principles, you can also listen to a recent podcast interview with the authors. You can also reach out to Cheryl and Shannon for any questions about their work at or   

Funding Opportunities

OVC FY 2021 Services for Minor Victims of Sex Trafficking

Closing Date: July 6, 2021

The purpose of this program is to develop, expand, or strengthen victim service programs for minor victims of sex trafficking, whose victimization occurred when they were under the age of 18. A pre-application webinar reviewing solicitation requirements took place on May 21 and a recording will be made available on the OVC website.

Learning Opportunities

Virtual Workshop on Working Together to Combat Trafficking in Cantinas and Other Sexually Exploitive Establishments in the Rio Grande Valley

FREE: July 8th from 8:30 AM - 4:30 PM

Join the Refugee Services of Texas in collaboration with the Department of Justice, TABC, TDLR, TRLA, and the Harris County District Attorney's Office for a FREE virtual conference for law enforcement, prosecutors, and service providers aiming to spotlight sexually exploitive industries in order to shed light on trafficking in the Rio Grande Valley.

This workshop will include discussions on a former cantina case based out of Houston, survivor perspective, civil remedies for cantina survivors, culturally-sensitive responses, and nonprofit/law enforcement collaboration.

Register Today


Coalition to End Sexual Exploitation 2021 Global Summit

FREE: July 20-24, 2021

The rise of the Internet, social media, and other technologies have completely revolutionized the way people live. Along with the good these developments have made possible, they have also unleashed tidal waves of sexual harm.

The theme of the 2021 CESE Summit is: Building a Future Free of Sexual Abuse and Exploitation. Each presentation will provide solutions and resources, and together we will network and strategize.

Register Today


2021 Texas Education for Homeless Children and Youth Program Summit - August 3rd & 5th

TNOYS and TEA believe we can best support students experiencing homelessness by elevating their voices and experiences. Guided by this principle, the TEHCY Program Summit engages young adults as speakers, consultants, and facilitators throughout the conference. Attendees will have the unique opportunity to learn directly from youth and young adults with lived expertise, putting the power of youth-adult partnership into action.

Register Today


38th Annual Governor's Volunteer Awards - Nominations Now Open!

Nominations are open for the 38th Annual Governor's Volunteer Awards. The Governor's Volunteer Awards are administered by OneStar Foundation and are an opportunity for the state of Texas to honor the exemplary service and volunteerism of individuals and organizations making a significant impact in communities across Texas.

“Texans truly are generous by nature,” said Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott. “And Greg and I are so inspired by the selfless service shown by so many volunteers all across this great state this past year. As our communities continue to grow more resilient each day, we are reminded that the true strength of the Lone Star State is found in our people. We are pleased to once again celebrate that spirit of service though the Governor’s Volunteer Awards.”

Nominations for the awards are open in nine categories:

  • Governor’s Lifetime Volunteer Achievement Award
  • First Lady’s Youth Volunteer Rising Star Award
  • Volunteer of the Year Award
  • Volunteer Family of the Year Award
  • Corporate Volunteering Champion Award
  • Service-Learning Champion Award
  • Innovation in Volunteerism Award
  • Excellence in Disaster Volunteerism Award
  • National Service “Make a Difference” Award

For descriptions of the award categories or to nominate an individual or organization, visit

Nominations will close July 16, 2021. Awardees will be honored in the fall at an evening reception at the Governor's Mansion hosted by Honorary Chair of the Governor's Volunteer Awards, Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott. For more information visit

Success Stories

This newsletter, we celebrate the success of the legislative session and several new laws that will help us protect children and youth from exploitation; recognize, recover and support the healing of survivors; and bring exploiters to justice.

The Texas Human Trafficking Prevention Task Force provides recommendations to improve the legislative framework against human trafficking. For the 87th Legislative Session, the task force made a variety of recommendations related to statutory clean-up, investigative and prosecutorial tools, and enhancing victim protections. Nine of the ten proposals were ultimately passed by the legislature. We will be highlighting these provisions as well as additional legislation in our July 15th webinar.


Leg Session