Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Jan 11, 2022 / 18:07 pm
In recognition of National Human Trafficking Awareness Day on Jan. 11, a New Jersey congressman is calling on the U.S. House of Representatives to pass a bipartisan piece of legislation intended to combat what his office calls “modern-day slavery.”
“Human traffickers have benefitted from a culture of denial and a lack of awareness throughout our communities,” U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) said in a Jan. 11 press release. “Education and awareness programs — especially and including those provided by local grassroots organizations — are the victim’s best friend and the trafficker’s worst nightmare and go a long way toward preventing this heinous crime in the first place.”
That is why he and U.S. Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA) authored the Frederick Douglass Trafficking Victims Prevention and Protection Reauthorization Act of 2021 (H.R. 5150), first introduced in September.
According to Smith, the act would provide “approximately $1.6 billion over five years to strengthen and expand education, awareness and other critical programs that protect victims, prosecute perpetrators and prevent trafficking.”