Because human trafficking is a public health issue
Public Comment on Draft Legislation, House Committee on Ways and Means “Preventing Sex Trafficking and Improving Opportunities for Youth in Foster Care Act”
On January 17th, 2014, HEAL Submits a Letter in Support of Proposed Legislation:
“We submit this comment on behalf of HEAL Trafficking, an interdisciplinary network of health professionals from across the United States and beyond, working to combat human trafficking and to serve as a centralized resource on health for the broader anti-trafficking community.
We commend the House Ways and Means Committee for taking a bipartisan step to improve the lives of vulnerable children through the proposed legislation, “Preventing Sex Trafficking and Improving Opportunities for Youth in Foster Care. ”However, we implore the Committee to consider inclusion of all forms of child trafficking, including labor trafficking, in its legislation. While sex trafficking is the most visible form of trafficking, children in the United States also experience labor trafficking, including forced work as peddlers, beggars, nannies, domestic servants, and drug dealers, as well as forced work in agricultural, factory, and restaurant settings. These children come from vulnerable, often immigrant backgrounds, and interact with child welfare agencies, schools, and other social services. They, too, experience terrible abuse, including sexual assault and rape, and deserve our attention and protection.”