Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin joined 43 Attorneys General and the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) in a letter sent to U.S. House and Senate Appropriations leadership urging them to fund a series of authorized programs to fight the growing problem of human trafficking and slavery.
The letter describes support for the four provisions in S. 1572 and H.R. 2596, which provide funding and report language related to human trafficking programs. As Congress conferences the fiscal year 2012 Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations bill, NAAG asked congressional leaders to include specific funding levels for the Office of Justice Programs/State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance, Legal Activities/Civil Rights Division, Legal Activities/United States Attorney, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
“According to statistics from the Rhode Island Coalition Against Human Trafficking, the average age of entry into prostitution is 13 years old, with pimps preying upon their young victims within 48 hours of a child running away from home. There are unique challenges to dealing with victims of human trafficking. As a nation, we need to train our law enforcement partners and our victims’ service advocates in how to work with the victims to ensure they are safe from their traffickers,” said Attorney General Peter Kilmartin.
Recently, Attorney General Kilmartin joined forced with the Rhode Island Coalition Against Human Trafficking to support a new campaign aimed at ending the demand for human trafficking in Rhode Island. The End Demand Rhode Island Campaign recognizes that the horrific human rights violation of Sex Trafficking will only end when the demand has been abolished. “These proposed funding increases will be of great assistance to state and local law enforcement as they seek to investigate and prosecute traffickers and provide services to victims,” said NAAG President and Washington Attorney General McKenna.
The NAAG letter states, “The fact that the enslavement and trade in human beings exists in our modern world as a disturbingly large, highly profitable illicit industry is unacceptable. Slavery damages our communities, taints the products and services we consume and the profits we earn, and is one of the most pressing human rights challenges of our time.”
A copy of the NAAG letter with requested funding levels is attached and can be found here: http://www.naag.org/sign-on_archive.php.