sex abuse

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A bill allowing certain Florida officials to make announced and unannounced visits to the state’s juvenile justice facilities is now heading to the House floor.

Lauren Book / facebook

A bill that would allow sex-trafficking survivors to sue hotels that turn a blind eye to their abuse is moving in the Florida Senate. Some lawmakers worry that Senate Bill 1044 would create a new area of the law – or grounds for fraud.  Monday the testimony of four survivors moved the Senate Committee on Children, Families and Elder Affairs to a unanimous vote in favor of the measure.

MGN Online

Florida lawmakers are already moving forward a bill to reform the state’s juvenile justice system. The measure aims to address abuses within the system outlined in a Miami Herald investigative series.

Florida Channel

In the coming weeks, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice will be putting the finishing touches on a newly created office where juveniles and their families can raise concerns. That’s just one of the reforms the head of DJJ recently told a group of lawmakers, who had some suggestions of their own to address abuses within the system outlined in a Miami Herald investigative series.

MGN Online

Florida lawmakers are expected next week to hold committee hearings about the Miami Herald’s investigative series into the Department of Juvenile Justice.

Florida Channel

Florida lawmakers are expected to soon take a deeper look into the Miami Herald investigative series, which detailed abuses within the state’s juvenile facilities. A panel of legislators this week gave the head of the Florida’s juvenile justice system a preview of what’s to come.

Florida Channel

The head of Florida’s juvenile justice system says a Miami Herald investigation detailing abuses within detention facilities does not tell the full story.

Leon County Sheriff's office

The Leon County Sheriff’s office is continuing to investigate a former local youth pastor, following his Monday arrest for sexual offenses against children.

Florida Courthouse Therapy Dogs youtube

Governor Rick Scott has signed a bill into law seeking to make it easier for more abuse victims to testify in court through the use of therapy dogs.

Sascha Cordner / WFSU-FM

This month is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and at the Florida Capitol, a large display with more than a thousand shoes worn by sex abuse survivors can be seen through the rest of this week. And, a group of survivors as well as advocates also trekked to Tallahassee to share their stories.

Sexual abuse survivor and advocate Lauren Book is not only a newly elected Senator, she’s also taking on a new leadership role.

Lauren Book's ad screenshot

The sexual abuse survivor and advocate running for a state Senate seat just put out her first campaign ad.

Florida Channel

A bill allowing all sexual abuse victims to avoid going physically to court to give their testimony during a trial has passed its first Senate panel. But, not without some concerns.

Lauren's Kids

There will soon be a new tool available to parents and caregivers of sexually abused kids.

A new survey commissioned by a sexual abuse survivor says child abuse occurs more frequently than people think, and reporting the suspected abuse does not happen as much as it should.


A bill allowing young victims to secretly record their attackers to use as evidence in court is now headed to the Governor, after passing the House Friday.

Florida Channel

Bills aimed at helping Florida’s youth have passed the state Senate Wednesday.

Sen. Benacquisto's twitter

A measure allowing certain abuse victims to secretly record their attackers to use as evidence in court is now heading to the Senate floor.

Florida Channel

A bill allowing young sexual abuse victims to secretly record their attackers to use as evidence in court cleared its first Senate hearing Monday.

Florida Channel

A measure allowing sexual abuse victims to use secret recordings of their attackers as evidence in court is moving forward in the Florida House. The proposed committee bill gained initial approval in the House Criminal Justice Subcommittee Tuesday.

Florida Channel

Attorney General Pam Bondi says she’s on board with a bill making it easier for sexual abuse victims under the age of 17 to privately record their attacker so it can hold up in a Florida court.

“Hopefully, we’ll be able to get that through because that’s very, very important. But, just know, that it’s a very narrow, narrow field, and only has to do with children and rape victims—not just at the hands of their parents, but any pedophile,” said Bondi, during a recent Associated Press gathering in Tallahassee.

At least one lawmaker has followed through on an abuse survivor’s vow to make sure legislation was filed to allow young victims to use private recordings in sex abuse cases. It follows a recent Florida Supreme Court ruling that will now allow a man convicted of abusing his stepdaughter to get a new trial, after she taped an incriminating conversation without his consent.

The Case

Following a recent Florida Supreme Court ruling, sex abuse survivor and victims advocate Lauren Book is looking to pursue legislation to allow young victims to use secret recordings as evidence in court. 

The ruling centers around a teenager who privately recorded a conversation between her and her stepfather, Richard McDade, who she said was abusing her for six years until she was 16-years-old.

With summer just around the corner, that’s when many parents send their children to Summer Camp. But, Lauren Book says it’s important that parents arm themselves with information that can keep their kids safe from sexual abuse. Book is a sex abuse survivor, who partnered with the Florida Department of Children and Families to provide tips for parents.

Sascha Cordner / WFSU-FM

A new state law passed last year now increases the penalties for failure to report any suspected child abuse. And, a child abuse awareness advocate partnered with child welfare officials to make sure Floridians are aware of the signs in their newly-launched “Don’t Miss the Signs” campaign.

Under a previous state law, only caregivers, like parents and legal guardians, were required to report the abuse of a child under their care. But, now, with a new law that passed and went into effect last year, there are tougher penalties in place to make sure all abuse is reported.