Drinker Biddle and the Villanova Law Institute to Address Commercial Sexual Exploitation presented a CLE program on “Clearing Records for Human Trafficking Survivors.”

Pennsylvania’s first comprehensive anti-trafficking statute, enacted in 2014, provides enhanced legal protections for victims of human trafficking, including the ability to have crimes that occurred as a direct result of being a victim of human trafficking vacated from the record. Unfortunately, this vacatur provision of the statute is not accomplishing the goals the legislature intended, as only a few survivors have successfully filed motions utilizing the provision.

This training introduced attorneys to Pennsylvania’s laws related to commercial sexual exploitation and explained the state’s vacatur remedy for trafficking survivors, enabling pro bono attorneys to competently file such motions. Participants also learned best practices for representing victims and survivors of human trafficking, and gained exposure to resources and organizations that can provide technical assistance to counsel, and victim services to clients.

Panelists Included:

  • Shea Rhodes, Director of the Villanova Law Institute to Address Commercial Sexual Exploitation
  • Katharyn I. Christian McGee, Associate Pro Bono Counsel at Duane Morris
  • Katherine “KC” Obenschain, Pro Bono Coordinator, Duane Morris
  • Jamie Manirakiza, Director of Anti-Trafficking and Social Services, Salvation Army
  • Mira E. Baylson, Associate, Drinker Biddle