The proposed task force, outlined in SB 354 and HB 325, would operate within the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) and receive $150,000 for a year-long investigation into the root causes of the issue.
According to data from the Florida Crime Information Center, an FDLE public access system, 44% of the 123,869 women reported missing in the state from January 1, 2018, to October 17, 2023, were African American.
This percentage is significantly higher than the 17% of the state’s population identified as Black or African American, according to Census data.
“The disproportionately high number of missing persons and the systemic issues that contribute to these disparities call for special attention. We must stand firm in our commitment to justice, equality, and the safety of all individuals.”
Task force responsibilities include examining systemic causes behind violence against African American women, developing methods for tracking and collecting data on the issue, and proposing measures to reduce and eliminate the problem while providing support to victims, their families, and communities.
Representative Robinson emphasized the societal importance of addressing these disparities, stating:
“Investigating the disproportionate trends of missing and murdered African-American women is not just a matter of justice; it’s a matter of fulfilling our society’s commitment to equality and protection.”
If approved, the legislation would take immediate effect, with both SB 354 and HB 325 awaiting hearings before the committees to which they were referred.
The proposed task force would need to submit a comprehensive report by December 15, 2025, before disbanding sixteen days later.