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By November 17, 2021No Comments

The START Act, S.674/A.459, has been signed into law by Governor Kathy Hochul. 


The Start Act is a criminal record relief law that will enable survivors of human trafficking to petition the court to clear convictions for any and all offenses survivors were forced to commit during their exploitation.This law is a significant win for survivors of human trafficking across New York State who have been prevented from moving forward with their lives because of the law’s current limitations. This expanded version will allow survivors to petition to clear all offenses, not just prostitution-related offenses, giving them access to the jobs, housing, and education that criminal backgrounds often exclude them from. Human trafficking and forced criminality disproportionately affect LGBTQ+ and people of color and as such, the passage of the START Act is racial justice, gender justice, LGBTQ+ justice, economic justice, and immigration justice. We applaud Gov. Hochul for signing the bill into law, and all the advocacy agencies who championed this bill. 

The International Institute of Buffalo’s Impact


Last year alone, IIB assisted nearly 375 survivors of human trafficking as they worked toward safety, stability, and healing through offering case management services, language access, and education regarding victim rights, criminal justice-based advocacy and links with our many community partners who offer emergency shelter, legal support, medical and mental health services, and employment skills.
Our team is ready to help survivors clear the unjust criminal records that inhibit their success and threaten to re-victimize them. Your donations will help us create a safer, more just future for survivors