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 October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st 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 devic...
We build IoT infrastructure products - when you have to integrate different devices, different systems and cloud you have to build an application to do that but we eliminate the need to build an application. Our products can integrate any device, any system, any cloud regardless of protocol," explained Peter Jung, Chief Product Officer at Pulzze Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, 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. Me...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ayehu will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on October 31 - November 2, 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara California. Ayehu provides IT Process Automation & Orchestration solutions for IT and Security professionals to identify and resolve critical incidents and enable rapid containment, eradication, and recovery from cyber security breaches. Ayehu provides customers greater control over IT infras...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend 21st Cloud Expo October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, CA, and June 12-14, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev, a client-oriented software development company, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MobiDev is a software company that develops and delivers turn-key mobile apps, websites, web services, and complex software systems for startups and enterprises. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business...
SYS-CON Events announced today that GrapeUp, the leading provider of rapid product development at the speed of business, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Grape Up is a software company, specialized in cloud native application development and professional services related to Cloud Foundry PaaS. With five expert teams that operate in various sectors of the market acr...
"We are a monitoring company. We work with Salesforce, BBC, and quite a few other big logos. We basically provide monitoring for them, structure for their cloud services and we fit into the DevOps world" explained David Gildeh, Co-founder and CEO of Outlyer, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st Int\ernational Cloud Expo®, which will take place October 31-November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive advantage. By offering a suite of proven hosting and management services, Enzu wants companies to focus on the core of their ...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st 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 w...
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the de...
While DevOps most critically and famously fosters collaboration, communication, and integration through cultural change, culture is more of an output than an input. In order to actively drive cultural evolution, organizations must make substantial organizational and process changes, and adopt new technologies, to encourage a DevOps culture. Moderated by Andi Mann, panelists discussed how to balance these three pillars of DevOps, where to focus attention (and resources), where organizations might...
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann and Aruna Ravichandran have been named Co-Chairs of @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley which will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "DevOps is at the intersection of technology and business-optimizing tools, organizations and processes to bring measurable improvements in productivity and profitability," said Aruna Ravichandran, vice president, DevOps product and solutions marketing...
Automation is enabling enterprises to design, deploy, and manage more complex, hybrid cloud environments. Yet the people who manage these environments must be trained in and understanding these environments better than ever before. A new era of analytics and cognitive computing is adding intelligence, but also more complexity, to these cloud environments. How smart is your cloud? How smart should it be? In this power panel at 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, pane...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloud Academy named "Bronze Sponsor" of 21st International Cloud Expo which will take place October 31 - November 2, 2017 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Cloud Academy is the industry’s most innovative, vendor-neutral cloud technology training platform. Cloud Academy provides continuous learning solutions for individuals and enterprise teams for Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and the most popular cloud com...