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Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. PORTMAN. Mr. President, this is a commonsense amendment. We just voted on the Violence Against Women Act amendment for trafficking offered by Senator Leahy. This is an amendment that actually deals with the underlying legislation. It is really a clarifying amendment.

I am pleased to be joined by Senators BLUMENTHAL, AYOTTE, COLLINS, BROWN, COCHRAN, RUBIO, ALEXANDER, and GILLIBRAND. It has to do with offering protection and services to victims of sex trafficking under VAWA. This simply says under section 302 of VAWA that we ensure sex trafficking is covered.

Right now youth and children who are exposed to domestic violence, dating violence, or sexual assault or stalking are covered but not sex trafficking. I think it is consistent with the amendment we just passed. It is also an important clarification of the underlying bill.

There are about 300,000 young Americans the FBI says are at risk today. This is a commonsense approach, and I would hope that all Senators on both sides of the aisle would agree that sex trafficking should be covered by this act.


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