In a 95-3 vote on February 12, the US Senate voted to reauthorize the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA). The US’s most important tool in combating human trafficking and modern-day slavery, TVPA had actually expired in September 2011, and numerous initiatives were at risk, including support for law enforcement and services for survivors.
Senator Patrick Leahy (Democrat- Vermont) offered reauthorization of TVPA as an amendment to the reauthorization of the Violence against Women Act (VAWA). VAWA was also reauthorized by the Senate, in a 78-22 vote. Marina Colby, director of public policy and government relations for End Child Prostitution and Trafficking (ECPAT) applauded the action, noting “the [reauthorization of TVPA] and VAWA work to define our nation’s commitment to ending egregious human rights violations and serving those harmed by human trafficking and gender-based violence.” Find out how your Senator voted on the reauthorization of TVPA here, and you can also view how your Senator voted on VAWA here.
In order for TVPA to be fully enacted as law, however, it must also be passed by the House of Representatives. There is no current bill in the house, and we urge all concerned citizens to follow the instructions at this site!