Congresswoman Beatty Marks Anniversary of Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act
April 11, 2019 marks the one-year anniversary that the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act (FOSTA) (P.L. 115-164) was signed into law. The bill, of which U.S. Congresswoman Joyce Beatty (OH-03) was the lead co-sponsor, lifted barriers that prevented the federal government, states, and victims of sex trafficking from pursuing justice against one of America’s most prolific and inhumane underground markets. To commemorate the anniversary, Beatty issued the following statement:
“I am proud to have helped lead the bipartisan charge to pass the Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act. Since enactment, we have seen some of the largest online human trafficking hotspots shut their doors, but still our work continues. We owe it to every victim, because one victim is one too many.”
Throughout Beatty’s Congressional tenure, she has worked with Democratic and Republican colleagues to combat human trafficking. In fact, Beatty’s first bipartisan legislation to combat child sex trafficking passed unanimously the House of Representatives and was later signed into law as part of a larger measure, the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA) (P.L. 114-22), by President Obama on May 29, 2015. In 2016, on the one year anniversary of JVTA, Beatty again joined a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers in sending a letter to the Department of Justice to implement the entirety of the law. In 2017, Beatty similarly united with a bipartisan group of lawmakers to introduce the Trafficking Survivors Relief Act, a bill to expunge criminal records of victims convicted of non-violent crimes associated with human trafficking.
Her efforts have continued in the 116th Congress. Earlier this year, she reintroduced another anti-trafficking bill: the Trafficking Victims Housing Act, H.R. 508. This legislation would require a federal study to be conducted to assess the availability and accessibility of housing and related services for victims of trafficking who are experiencing homelessness and those at risk. The bill has been referred to the House Committee on Financial Services and is awaiting further consideration.