Welcome!

News Feed Item

Lauren's Kids Hails Landmark Child Protection Legislation Signed Today by Florida Governor Rick Scott

Advocate Lauren Book Commends Florida Leaders for the State's Commitment to Child Protection and Sexual Abuse Prevention

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., April 1, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Child advocate Lauren Book today applauded the Florida Legislature and Governor Rick Scott for their commitment to child safety by enacting swift and sweeping legislation to protect children from sexually violent predators. The priority legislation was taken up and unanimously passed by both the Florida Senate and House during the first week of the annual legislative session, and today's bill signing coincides with the first day of National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

"Our state leaders showed true solidarity and commitment to ending sexual violence here in Florida," said Lauren Book, the sexual abuse survivor and nationally recognized child protection advocate who founded Lauren's Kids. "Each and every day, I talk with survivors and their families, listening to their stories and encouraging them with the very meaningful legislative changes that are happening in Tallahassee. I am honored to bring their voices to the Capitol, and proud to know that our state leaders are not only listening, but acting."

The legislation, which is part of the Legislature's "Protecting Florida's Vulnerable" initiative, closes loopholes in the justice system, mandates community supervision of sex offenders, and increases mandatory minimum sentences for sexually violent predators and those who offend against people with developmental disabilities.

In addition, the legislative package contains provisions that eliminate the statute of limitations for certain sexual crimes committed against a child younger than 16; require college campuses to notify students and staff about sexual offenders who live nearby; and expand the identifying information sex offenders are required to provide to law enforcement to include such things as email addresses, screen names and information on the vehicles they drive.

Key lawmakers – including Senate President Don Gaetz, House Speaker Will Weatherford, Senators Rob Bradley, Denise Grimsley, Eleanor Sobel and Lizbeth Benacquisto, and Representatives Gayle Harrell and Matt Gaetz – also attended the Capitol ceremony, which represents final action on a 2014 legislative policy priority.

Taking a brief detour from her 1,500-mile "Walk in My Shoes" statewide journey, Lauren Book traveled to Tallahassee to be part of this momentous occasion. Also witnessing the historic event were dozens of survivors and advocates who gathered at the Manatee Glens Rape Crisis Center in Bradenton to watch the bill signing via a special two-way live stream set up for the occasion by Lauren's Kids video technology partner Life Size.

"By signing these historic bills into law today, Governor Scott is sending a clear message that our state is committed to keeping children safe from predators," said Ron Book, president of Lauren's Kids and father of Lauren Book. "This legislation is another major step forward in protecting children and ensuring that Florida has zero tolerance for those who intend to harm our children."

Since the first "Walk in My Shoes" statewide journey five years ago, Lauren's Kids has successfully advocated for the passage of numerous landmark laws, including:

  • 2010 - Extending Statute of Limitations: Eliminated the statute of limitations for both civil and criminal prosecutions for crimes committed against children younger than 16.
  • 2011 - Walk in Their Shoes Act: Expanded the admissibility of collateral crime evidence in cases where a person is charged with child molestation or a sexual offense.
  • 2012 - Protection of Vulnerable Persons: Requires that all Floridians report known or suspected child abuse and if a report is not made, the non-reporter will be charged with a felony. Also requires that colleges and universities report abuse or face up to a $1 million fine.
  • 2013 - Expanding the Hearsay Exception to Adolescent Victims of Sexual Abuse: Allows an out-of-court statement made by a victim up to age 16 as admissible evidence in a civil or criminal proceeding dependent upon certain findings of the court.

"The safety of Florida's families, especially our children, is of paramount importance and I am proud to sign this legislation that adds protections for vulnerable Floridians during Sexual Assault Awareness Month," said Governor Scott. "As a father of two girls and a grandfather of three boys, I think about how the legislation I am signing today will affect Florida's families. It will make Florida's children safer and adds protections for our communities, especially for our children. These measures will make a positive difference for generations to come."

After the bill signing, Lauren Book will continue her 1,500-mile "Walk in My Shoes" statewide journey, which raises awareness about the devastating effects of child sexual abuse, educates communities about prevention, encourages victims to speak up and get help, and promotes passage of tougher laws to protect children and punish perpetrators.

To learn more about Lauren's Kids, visit www.laurenskids.org.

Lauren's Kids
Lauren's Kids is a non-profit organization that works to prevent abuse and help survivors heal. The organization, which has offices in Aventura and Tallahassee, Florida, was started by Lauren Book, a survivor of childhood sexual abuse who endured six years of abuse at the hands of her nanny. Lauren's organization offers a 24-hour crisis hotline, elementary school prevention curriculum, annual 1,500-mile awareness walk, legislative advocacy and speaking engagements. For more information, visit laurenskids.org.

SOURCE Lauren's Kids

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
As the world moves toward more DevOps and Microservices, application deployment to the cloud ought to become a lot simpler. The Microservices architecture, which is the basis of many new age distributed systems such as OpenStack, NetFlix and so on, is at the heart of Cloud Foundry - a complete developer-oriented Platform as a Service (PaaS) that is IaaS agnostic and supports vCloud, OpenStack and AWS. Serverless computing is revolutionizing computing. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Raghav...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long dev...
Almost two-thirds of companies either have or soon will have IoT as the backbone of their business in 2016. However, IoT is far more complex than most firms expected. How can you not get trapped in the pitfalls? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will introduce a holistic method of IoTification, which is the process of IoTifying the existing technology and business models to adopt and leverage IoT. He will drill down to the components in this fra...
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
There is growing need for data-driven applications and the need for digital platforms to build these apps. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Muddu Sudhakar, VP and GM of Security & IoT at Splunk, will cover different PaaS solutions and Big Data platforms that are available to build applications. In addition, AI and machine learning are creating new requirements that developers need in the building of next-gen apps. The next-generation digital platforms have some of the past platform needs a...
Fact: storage performance problems have only gotten more complicated, as applications not only have become largely virtualized, but also have moved to cloud-based infrastructures. Storage performance in virtualized environments isn’t just about IOPS anymore. Instead, you need to guarantee performance for individual VMs, helping applications maintain performance as the number of VMs continues to go up in real time. In his session at Cloud Expo, Dhiraj Sehgal, Product and Marketing at Tintri, wil...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Enterprises have forever faced challenges surrounding the sharing of their intellectual property. Emerging cloud adoption has made it more compelling for enterprises to digitize their content, making them available over a wide variety of devices across the Internet. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Santosh Ahuja, Director of Architecture at Impiger Technologies, will introduce various mechanisms provided by cloud service providers today to manage and share digital content in a secure manner....
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitrons Solutions will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Hitrons Solutions Inc. is distributor in the North American market for unique products and services of small and medium-size businesses, including cloud services and solutions, SEO marketing platforms, and mobile applications.
SYS-CON Events announced today that eCube Systems, a leading provider of middleware modernization, integration, and management solutions, will exhibit at @DevOpsSummit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. eCube Systems offers a family of middleware evolution products and services that maximize return on technology investment by leveraging existing technical equity to meet evolving business needs. ...
SYS-CON Events announced today Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.
Pulzze Systems was happy to participate in such a premier event and thankful to be receiving the winning investment and global network support from G-Startup Worldwide. It is an exciting time for Pulzze to showcase the effectiveness of innovative technologies and enable them to make the world smarter and better. The reputable contest is held to identify promising startups around the globe that are assured to change the world through their innovative products and disruptive technologies. There w...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Isomorphic Software will exhibit at DevOps Summit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Isomorphic Software provides the SmartClient HTML5/AJAX platform, the most advanced technology for building rich, cutting-edge enterprise web applications for desktop and mobile. SmartClient combines the productivity and performance of traditional desktop software with the simp...
With so much going on in this space you could be forgiven for thinking you were always working with yesterday’s technologies. So much change, so quickly. What do you do if you have to build a solution from the ground up that is expected to live in the field for at least 5-10 years? This is the challenge we faced when we looked to refresh our existing 10-year-old custom hardware stack to measure the fullness of trash cans and compactors.