WASHINGTON, D.C.--Today, Congressman Ted Poe (TX-02) issued the following statement on the Senate Judiciary Committee’s passage of the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA). JVTA was included as an amendment to the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act and passed the committee unanimously. The companion legislation, sponsored by Congressman Poe passed the House of Representatives in May.

“I am pleased that the Senate Judiciary Committee has approved legislation to combat the scourge of human trafficking. Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA) addresses each of the three different groups involved in the crime of human trafficking: the trafficker, the buyer and the victim. JVTA implements a new, robust and aggressive strategy to help combat human trafficking in the United States. It targets demand by treating those who buy sex from minors and other trafficking victims like what they are: criminals. Finally, JVTA encourages a victim-centered approach to fighting human trafficking so that victims are no longer treated as criminals. The House and Senate Judiciary Committee have now taken necessary steps to end modern day slavery in America; I urge both Senator Reid and the President to do the same.”