LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – President Donald Trump signed a bill that will allow victims of sex trafficking to file suit against online companies that knowingly facilitate the unlawful act.
In effort to eradicate human trafficking the federal government has seized the website “Backpage“, the internet leader for prostitution ads.
The personal section on Craigslist has been shutdown as well, hoping to stop human trafficking.
“We are all together, politicians both Republican and Democrat signing this and representing this to you in your honor so thank you all very much we really appreciate it. You’re very brave.”
Surrounded by survivors, President Donald Trump added his signature to H.R. 1865, giving a form of power to victims of human trafficking.
California Congressman Kevin McCarthy said, “We have tried 14 years to get this bill through. You just achieved something we haven’t been able to.”
According to Human Right First, about 29 million victims are trapped in this modern day slavery; almost 5 million are forced into sex trafficking.
Congressman Kevin McCarthy says 70% of child trafficking is done online and with the passing of this bill, lives will be saved.
“Because of what you’re doing today, that’s already shut down. 87% of that is already shut down, you are saving lives” the Congressman said.
Val Senegal, Education Director at Hearts of Hope says through an internal study, 58% of students admitted to having conversations with adults they have never met online.
Senegal said, “There is a connection and we have to do something about it and this bill is the first step, of many more I hope, to try and tackle this issue.”
The bill establishes enhanced penalties, including a fine, a prison term of up to 25 years, or both.
A person injured by an aggravated offense may recover damages and attorneys’ fees in a federal civil action.