The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act Advances in the Senate Thanks to the Violence Against Woman Act

On February 12, 2013, the Violence Again Women Act (VAWA) passed in the Senate with critical amendments made by Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy’s (D-VT) to secure the reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) as part of VAWA and by Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) to authorize grants to enhance the safety of youth and children who are victims of, or exposed to sex trafficking, domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking.

The Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) was enacted in 2000 to create tools to enable the U.S. government to address the prosecution of traffickers, protection for victims, and prevention of human trafficking. This Act serves as the cornerstone of legal protection for victims of trafficking at the federal level and sets a standard for state legislatures around the nation. For 18 years, VAWA has been the foundation of fighting violence, providing services and resources for victims of violence. Together these two statutes have enabled America to lead the world in protecting and delivering justice to victims of trafficking.

“National leadership is the key to combatting this crime,” said Linda Smith, President and Founder of Shared Hope International. “When our federal government takes a stance against trafficking, they reenergize the prioritization of innovative and effective solutions to this national crisis.”

The TVPA serves as a baseline standard for Shared Hope’s Protected Innocence Challenge, a comprehensive analysis of existing state laws against a framework of legal components necessary to fully protect children from child sex trafficking. Under the Challenge, every state receives a Report Card that grades the state on 41 key legislative components that must be addressed in state’s laws in order to effectively respond to the crime of domestic minor sex trafficking. In addition, each state receives a complete analysis of this 41-component review and practical recommendations for improvement. Click here to find out how your state scored.

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