Rep. Karen Bass Statement Urging Comprehensive Efforts to Combat Human Trafficking

Jan 2, 2013

Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Karen Bass (D-CA), founder and co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth issued the following statement urging more comprehensive efforts to combat human trafficking as we recognize National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month.  The Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth has been working in a bipartisan fashion to develop transformative legislation to remedy many of the short comings within our current foster care system, including the impacts of sex trafficking on foster youth.  

“This month we rededicate ourselves to putting an end to one of the greatest human rights abuses of our generation – human trafficking.  As founder and co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth, I look forward to continuing our bipartisan efforts to develop comprehensive approaches to remedy many of the short comings within our current foster care system, including the impacts of sex trafficking on foster youth. 

Unfortunately, due to abuse, neglect and resulting family separation, foster children are particularly vulnerable to commercial sexual exploitation. Across the nation, pimps target foster youth group homes as recruitment hubs. In Los Angeles, the Probation Department reports that at least 59% of the girls identified as victims of domestic minor sex trafficking were foster children.
 
It’s clear that a comprehensive strategy is needed to ensure that our nation’s foster youth do not fall through the cracks and end up exploited on the streets. Our child welfare system must provide appropriate prevention services as well as resources and shelter for victims in order to stop this dangerous cycle.”