Noem’s Anti-Trafficking Legislation Passes Senate
Washington, D.C. – Representative Kristi Noem today applauded the U.S. Senate for passing a sweeping anti-trafficking package, which includes legislation the congresswoman authored to help ensure shelters and facilities looking to provide housing for trafficking survivors have access to critical funding, among other things.
“Trafficking victims and survivors have been exposed to the worst of humanity,” said Noem. “We have a fundamental responsibility to protect these young people, and when such efforts fail, we must help intervene and assist victims in the healing process. I’m hopeful my legislation and the additional provisions passed by the Senate today will help facilitate prevention, intervention and recovery efforts to protect those involved or at risk of becoming involved in this criminal industry. I applaud the Senate for today’s step forward.”
Rep. Noem’s language was first introduced as the Human Trafficking, Prevention, Intervention and Recovery Act in 2014. It passed the U.S. House of Representatives in both 2014 and 2015, but was not taken up by the Senate until now. The Congresswoman’s legislation takes a three-pronged approach in combatting human trafficking:
- Improves existing Department of Justice grants, ensuring the grants support shelters for survivors. Currently, there are just 200 beds available in the United States for underage victims.
- Launches a review by the Interagency Task-Force to Monitor and Combat Traffickingthat will look into federal and state trafficking prevention activities. The review will be done in consultation with nongovernmental organizations and will work to identify and develop best practices to prevent trafficking.
- Requires an inventory of existing federal anti-trafficking efforts by the non-partisan Government Accountability Office to make sure all federal agencies and programs work together and that federal resources are being targeted where needed.