With one big push – NOW — the anti-slavery movement can get the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) through the U.S. Senate.
A vote is scheduled for Monday to attach the TVPA as an amendment to the Violence Against Women Act.
Please call, e-mail, Tweet or Facebook your two U.S. Senators before Monday’s vote. You can find their contact information at www.senate.gov by selecting your state in the upper right corner of the Senate webpage.
Specifically: tell them to support Senator Patrick Leahy’s (D-VT) amendment (known as Amendment #21) to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) (S.47).
It’s easy to do and takes less than a minute. Here’s what to say/write:
Hello. My name is ________. I am a constituent from __________.
I am calling/writing to urge Senator _______________ to support Senator Leahy’s amendment #21 to the Violence Against Women Act (S.47), which will reauthorize the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA), and the final passage of VAWA. The TVPA expired in September 2011 and unless it is renewed, critical federal programs and the victims they support will be at risk. Reauthorization of this legislation must be a national priority. Thank you for your support.
Here’s the background on the TVPA: It was first passed in 2000 and it’s the cornerstone legislation that authorizes a wide range of federal action to combat slavery — from prosecuting traffickers, to providing shelter for slavery survivors, to preventing vulnerable people from enslavement in the first place.
The law must be reauthorized every few years, and it always has been in the past – with broad bipartisan support. But the 112th Congress adjourned in January without acting on the bill (it was called S.1301 in the 112th Congress).
Now that the 113th Congress has begun, there’s a fresh chance to get this vital piece of legislation passed. The TVPA makes America a global leader in fighting modern-day slavery. Failing to reauthorize this law tells traffickers that we’ve lost our resolve to stand up for human rights.
Efforts to fight trafficking and modern-day slavery also protect women from violence. That’s because women comprise a huge percentage of people in slavery today. Attaching the TVPA to the Violence Against Women Act makes sense.
We’re near the finish line in the Senate. Let’s get it done!