WASHINGTON – A bipartisan bill led by
Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Sen.
Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) that supports victims of human trafficking passed
the Senate with broad bipartisan support last night. The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPA) will
establish and reauthorize critical programs to prevent human trafficking,
promote justice for survivors, provide services to victims and increase federal
coordination to enhance the federal government’s response to the crisis of
“I’m glad that our bipartisan legislation
tackling the heinous crime of human trafficking passed the Senate. Human
trafficking often occurs right under our noses. Our bill opens more doors to
educate law enforcement and high-risk youth on how to detect trafficking, and
it aids victims in their pursuit of justice. I hope my colleagues in the House
will support our effort to fight against traffickers’ horrendous crimes and
find justice for victims,” Grassley said.
“I’m pleased the Senate has passed our
legislation to reauthorize and update the Trafficking
Victims Protection Act. For more than two decades, this landmark
legislation has provided resources to law enforcement partners and nonprofits
around the country to better prevent human trafficking and protect survivors. I
thank Senator Grassley for his partnership in getting this reauthorization bill
passed by the Senate and hope the House will similarly act to send this to the
president’s desk this week,” Feinstein
Victims Protection Reauthorization Act extends and updates programs for
domestic human trafficking survivors and establishes a wide range of measures
to address human trafficking and the needs of victims.
Education and public information are a
critical first line of defense against human trafficking. This bill improves
training of federal law enforcement personnel by ensuring anti-trafficking
information is provided to staff at federal departments and executive agencies.
The bill also establishes a Government Accountability Office (GAO) study on
accessibility of mental health care and substance use disorder treatment for
In order to better help victims of
trafficking, the legislation takes a survivor-informed approach. It establishes
a pilot program where underserved communities may apply for funding to develop
and implement treatment models and support services to youth at high risk of
TVPA amends the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act by including the phrases
“of victim of child abuse and neglect” and “of sexual abuse” if the child is
identified as a victim of trafficking. TVPA encourages state plans to maintain
regular communication with the National Center for Missing and Exploited
Children to ensure the safe recovery of missing or abducted children.
In 2017, Grassley and Feinstein led the Senate’s effort
to unanimously pass the Trafficking Victims
Protection Act of 2017, renewing the existing programs that made
federal resources available to human trafficking survivors.
This legislation is backed by the
Covenant House, Rights4Girls, National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE),
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), National District
Attorneys Association (NDAA), Shared Hope International and Rape, Abuse and
Incest National Network (RAINN).
Additional details on TVPA are available