Senator Linda Stewart, District 13 — Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 3, 2017
Ali Akin Kurnaz,
Senator Linda Stewart's Privacy Bill Protecting Identities of Homeless Passes Florida Senate
SENATOR LINDA STEWART’S PRIVACY BILL PROTECTING IDENTITIES OF HOMELESS PASSES FLORIDA SENATE
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Legislation sponsored by state Senator Linda Stewart (D-Orlando) that would safeguard the dignity of those who have fallen on hard times won the unanimous endorsement of the Florida Senate on Tuesday.
SB 1024 is designed to protect the homeless population of the state by exempting their personal identifying information from public records requests. The bill also seeks to maximize the response rate to surveys conducted by the state from a population of Floridians that are particularly concerned with their privacy, suffer from mental illness, or have undergone the trauma of domestic violence or substance abuse.
“The release of individual identifying information could lead to discrimination, injury, and pose a barrier to homeless persons receiving services,” said Sen. Stewart. “At the same time, accurately collecting this data for funding purposes ensures that we are able to better assist our communities in the struggle to end homelessness in Florida.”
SB 1024 creates an exemption to the public records requirements for individual identifying information in homelessness surveys and databases. Unless re-enacted, the exemption would expire on Oct. 2, 2022.