The Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA or S. 1738) will provide funding and protections for victims of human trafficking here in the United States. It is the ONLY comprehensive legislation that provides funding for critical services victims need to heal and training for law enforcement so that they can better respond to victims and identify and prosecute traffickers.
JVTA has bipartisan support. It was originally introduced November 19, 2013 by Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and Marco Rubio (R-FL). The bill now has 20 bipartisan co-sponsors (13 Republican and 7 Democrat). The House passed an amended version of the bill by unanimous consent on May 20, 2014, but it has to be taken up in the Senate to become law.
Tomorrow (May 30), please join national advocacy groups in calling Senator Patrick Leahy‘s (D-VT) office to let him know that you want him to put JVTA on the calendar for the Judiciary Committee. The House UNANIMOUSLY passed JVTA last week (as H.R. 3530), and the bill must ALSO be passed by the Senate to become law. We need Senator Leahy, the Chair of the Judiciary Committee, to take up the legislation in the Senate.
Call (202) 224-4242 and ask to speak with Emily Livingston.
Then, you can use the following talking points as a guide:
- I am an advocate calling to ask Senator Leahy to put the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (S.1738) on the calendar so that it can be considered by the Judiciary Committee.
- JVTA is the ONLY comprehensive human trafficking legislation that provides funding and resources so that child victims of trafficking can receive critical services they need to heal.
- JVTA promotes interagency collaboration, which allows for law enforcement, child advocacy centers, social service agencies, healthcare providers, legal services programs, courts, and housing agencies to provide safety for child victims.
- JVTA clarifies existing laws, making it clear that those that abuse and buy children for sex must be held accountable for the harm they cause by law enforcement and prosecutors.
- Just last week, the House passed the JVTA unanimously on a 409-0 vote. We hope that the Senate can show similar support for our domestic victims of trafficking.
Again, call (202) 224-4242 tomorrow (May 30) and make this request!