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Sex Abuse Survivor Lauren Book Talks New Top Senate Role, Upcoming Bills


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

As the new Senate Democrats’ Pro Tempore, Book (D-Plantation) says she’s humbled she was chosen as the Second in Command, to Senate Minority Leader Oscar Braynon (D-Miami Gardens).

“I feel so proud to be able to work with such incredible members of the Senate, and I am so proud that Leader Braynon has put so much faith and so much confidence in me, and the Caucus believes in me and believe in my loyalty, my steadfast ability to continue to hold true to the values that we all believe in and continue to work really hard to make those things happen.”

Before she became a Senator, Book helped lobby to put new laws on the books to help sex abuse victims. And, she says she’ll continue that fight as a lawmaker.

“You know, some of the things that are really important to me are children and families and protecting the voiceless. The other things that are really important to me are about mental health,” she added. “Florida’s 49th in the country as it relates to per capita spending, as it relates to mental health. I think that we need to do more in that arena to ensure that we can continue to move people forward.”

Book says she hopes to file education-related bills as well.

“Not a lot of people know that I started my career as an educator in a Kindergarten classroom and so, working on that K-12 system, and after listening to the Senate President [Joe Negron] today and Pro Tempore [Anitere] Flores about higher ed and the need to invest in students and infrastructure is really important,” she continued. “So, I’m really excited to be able to get started and get our committee assignments and get moving.”

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.