Text: H.R.5575 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (06/23/2010)


111th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 5575

To establish a grant program to benefit domestic minor victims of sex trafficking, and for other purposes.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
June 23, 2010

Mrs. Maloney (for herself, Mr. Smith of New Jersey, Mr. Blumenauer, Mr. Cohen, Mr. Poe of Texas, Ms. Richardson, and Mr. Wu) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on Ways and Means, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To establish a grant program to benefit domestic minor victims of sex trafficking, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking Deterrence and Victims Support Act of 2010”.

SEC. 2. Findings.

Congress finds the following:

(1) Human trafficking is modern-day slavery. It is one of the fastest-growing, and the second largest, criminal enterprise in the world. Human trafficking generates an estimated profit of $32,000,000,000 per year, world wide.

(2) In the United States, human trafficking is an increasing problem. This criminal enterprise victimizes individuals in the United States, many of them children, who are forced into prostitution, and foreigners brought into the country, often under false pretenses, who are coerced into forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation.

(3) Sex trafficking is one of the most lucrative areas of human trafficking. Criminal gang members in the United States are increasingly involved in recruiting young women and girls into sex trafficking. Interviews with gang members indicate that the gang members regard working as an individual who solicits customers for a prostitute (commonly known as a “pimp”) to being as lucrative as trafficking in drugs, but with a much lower chance of being criminally convicted.

(4) National Incidence Studies of Missing, Abducted, Runaway and Throwaway Children, the definitive study of episodes of missing children, found that of the children who are victims of non-family abduction, runaway or throwaway children, the police are alerted by family or guardians in only 21 percent of the cases. In 79 percent of cases there is no report and no police involvement, and therefore no official attempt to find the child.

(5) In 2007, the Administration of Children and Families, Department of Health and Human Services, reported to the Federal Government 265,000 cases of serious physical, sexual, or psychological abuse of children.

(6) Experts estimate that each year at least 100,000 children in the United States are exploited through prostitution.

(7) Children who have run away from home are at a high risk of becoming exploited through sex trafficking. Children who have run away multiple times are at much higher risk of not returning home and of engaging in prostitution.

(8) The vast majority of children involved in sex trafficking have suffered previous sexual or physical abuse, live in poverty, or have no stable home or family life. These children require a comprehensive framework of specialized treatment and mental health counseling that addresses post-traumatic stress, depression, and sexual exploitation.

(9) The average age of first exploitation through prostitution is 13. Seventy-five percent of minors exploited through prostitution have a pimp. A pimp can earn $200,000 per year prostituting 1 sex trafficking victim.

(10) Sex trafficking of minors is a complex and varied criminal problem that requires a multi-disciplinary, cooperative solution. Reducing trafficking will require the Government to address victims, pimps, and johns, and to provide training specific to sex trafficking for law enforcement officers and prosecutors, and child welfare, public health, and other social service providers.

(11) Human trafficking is a criminal enterprise that imposes significant costs on the economy of the United States. Government and non-profit resources used to address trafficking include those of law enforcement, the judicial and penal systems, and social service providers. Without a range of appropriate treatments to help trafficking victims overcome the trauma they have experienced, victims will continue to be exploited by criminals and unable to support themselves, and will continue to require Government resources, rather than being productive contributors to the legitimate economy.

(12) Minor sex trafficking victims are under the age of 18. Because minors do not have the capacity to consent to their own commercial sexual exploitation, minor sex trafficking victims should not be charged as criminal defendants. Instead, minor victims of sex trafficking should have access to treatment and services to help them recover from their sexual exploitation, and should also be provided access to appropriate compensation for harm they have suffered.

(13) Several States have recently passed or are considering legislation that establishes a presumption that a minor charged with a prostitution offense is a severely trafficked person and should instead be cared for through the child protection system. Some such legislation also provides support and services to minor sex trafficking victims who are under the age of 18 years old. These services include safe houses, crisis intervention programs, community-based programs, and law-enforcement training to help officers identify minor sex trafficking victims.

(14) Sex trafficking of minors is not a problem that occurs only in urban settings. This crime also exists in rural areas and on Indian reservations. Efforts to address sex trafficking of minors should include partnerships with organizations that seek to address the needs of such underserved communities.

SEC. 3. Sense of Congress.

It is the sense of the Congress that—

(1) the Attorney General should implement changes to the National Crime Information Center database to ensure that—

(A) a child entered into the database will be automatically designated as an endangered juvenile if the child has been reported missing not less than 3 times in a 1-year period;

(B) the database is programmed to cross-reference newly entered reports with historical records already in the database; and

(C) the database is programmed to include a visual cue on the record of a child designated as an endangered juvenile to assist law enforcement officers in recognizing the child and providing the child with appropriate care and services;

(2) funds awarded under subpart 1 of part E of title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3750 et seq.) (commonly known as Byrne Grants) should be used to provide education, training, deterrence, and prevention programs relating to sex trafficking of minors;

(3) States should—

(A) treat minor victims of sex trafficking as crime victims rather than as criminal defendants or juvenile delinquents;

(B) adopt laws that—

(i) establish the presumption that a child under the age of 18 who is charged with a prostitution offense is a minor victim of sex trafficking;

(ii) avoid the criminal charge of prostitution for such a child, and instead consider such a child a victim of crime and provide the child with appropriate services and treatment; and

(iii) strengthen criminal provisions prohibiting the purchasing of commercial sex acts, especially with minors;

(C) amend State statutes and regulations—

(i) relating to crime victim compensation to make eligible for such compensation any individual who is a victim of sex trafficking as defined in section 1591(a) of title 18, United States Code, or a comparable State law against commercial sexual exploitation of children, and who would otherwise be ineligible for such compensation due to participation in prostitution activities because the individual is determined to have contributed to, consented to, benefitted from, or otherwise participated as a party to the crime for which the individual is claiming injury; and

(ii) relating to law enforcement reporting requirements to provide for exceptions to such requirements for victims of sex trafficking in the same manner as exceptions are provided to victims of domestic violence or related crimes; and

(4) demand for commercial sex with sex trafficking victims must be deterred through consistent enforcement of criminal laws against purchasing commercial sex.

SEC. 4. Sex trafficking block grants.

(a) Definitions.—In this section—

(1) the term “Assistant Attorney General” means the Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs of the Department of Justice;

(2) the term “eligible entity” means a State or unit of local government that—

(A) has significant criminal activity involving sex trafficking of minors;

(B) has demonstrated cooperation between State and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and social service providers in addressing sex trafficking of minors;

(C) has developed a workable, multi-disciplinary plan to combat sex trafficking of minors, including—

(i) the establishment of a shelter for minor victims of sex trafficking, through existing or new facilities;

(ii) the provision of rehabilitative care to minor victims of sex trafficking;

(iii) the provision of specialized training for law enforcement officers and social service providers for all forms of sex trafficking, with a focus on sex trafficking of minors;

(iv) prevention, deterrence, and prosecution of offenses involving sex trafficking of minors;

(v) cooperation or referral agreements with organizations providing outreach or other related services to runaway and homeless youth; and

(vi) law enforcement protocols or procedures to screen all individuals arrested for prostitution, whether adult or minor, for victimization by sex trafficking and by other crimes, such as sexual assault and domestic violence;

(D) has a victim certification process for eligibility and access to State-administered medical care to ensure that minor victims of sex trafficking who are not eligible for interim assistance under section 107(b)(F) of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (22 U.S.C. 7105(b)(F)) are granted eligibility for, and have access to, State-administered medical care immediately upon certification as such a victim, or as soon as practicable thereafter but not later than the period determined by the Assistant Attorney General in consultation with the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families of the Department of Health and Human Services; and

(E) provides an assurance that, under the plan under subparagraph (C), a minor victim of sex trafficking shall not be required to collaborate with law enforcement to have access to any shelter or services provided with a grant under this section;

(3) the term “minor victim of sex trafficking” means an individual who is—

(A) under the age of 18 years old, and is a victim of an offense described in section 1591(a) of title 18, United States Code, or a comparable State law; or

(B) at least 18 years old but not more than 20 years old, and who, on the day before the individual attained 18 years of age, was described in subparagraph (A) and was receiving shelter or services as a minor victim of sex trafficking;

(4) the term “qualified non-governmental organization” means an organization that—

(A) is not a State or unit of local government, or an agency of a State or unit of local government;

(B) has demonstrated experience providing services to victims of sex trafficking or related populations (such as runaway and homeless youth), or employs staff specialized in the treatment of sex trafficking victims; and

(C) demonstrates a plan to sustain the provision of services beyond the period of a grant awarded under this section; and

(5) the term “sex trafficking of a minor” means an offense described in subsection (a) of section 1591 of title 18, United States Code, the victim of which is a minor.

(b) Grants authorized.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The Assistant Attorney General, in consultation with the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families of the Department of Health and Human Services, is authorized to award block grants to not more than 6 eligible entities in different regions of the United States to combat sex trafficking, and not fewer than 1 of the block grants shall be awarded to an eligible entity with a State population of less than 5,000,000.

(2) GRANT AMOUNT.—Subject to the availability of appropriations under subsection (f)(1) to carry out this subsection, each grant awarded under this subsection shall be for an amount not less than $2,000,000 and not greater than $2,500,000.

(3) DURATION.—

(A) IN GENERAL.—A grant awarded under this section shall be for a period of 1 year.

(B) RENEWAL.—

(i) IN GENERAL.—The Assistant Attorney General may renew a grant under this section for two 1-year periods.

(ii) PRIORITY.—In awarding grants in any fiscal year after the first fiscal year in which grants are awarded under this section, the Assistant Attorney General shall give priority to applicants that received a grant in the preceding fiscal year and are eligible for renewal under this subparagraph, taking into account any evaluation of such applicant conducted pursuant to subsection (e), if available.

(4) CONSULTATION.—In carrying out this subsection, consultation by the Assistant Attorney General with the Assistant Secretary for Children and Families of the Department of Health and Human Services shall include consultation with respect to grantee evaluations, the avoidance of unintentional duplication of grants, and any other areas of shared concern.

(c) Use of funds.—

(1) ALLOCATION.—For each grant awarded under subsection (b)

(A) not less than 50 percent of the funds shall be used by the eligible entity to provide shelter and services (as described in subparagraphs (A) through (D) of paragraph (2)) to minor victims of sex trafficking through qualified nongovernmental organizations; and

(B) not less than 10 percent of the funds shall be awarded by the eligible entity to one or more qualified nongovernmental organizations with annual revenues of less than $750,000, to provide services to minor victims of sex trafficking or training for service providers related to sex trafficking of minors.

(2) AUTHORIZED ACTIVITIES.—Grants awarded pursuant to subsection (b) may be used for—

(A) providing shelter to minor victims of trafficking, including temporary or long-term placement as appropriate;

(B) providing 24-hour emergency social services response for minor victims of sex trafficking;

(C) providing minor victims of sex trafficking with clothing and other daily necessities needed to keep such victims from returning to living on the street;

(D) case management services for minor victims of sex trafficking;

(E) mental health counseling for minor victims of sex trafficking, including specialized counseling and substance abuse treatment;

(F) legal services for minor victims of sex trafficking;

(G) specialized training for law enforcement personnel and social service providers, specific to issues related to sex trafficking, including sex trafficking of minors;

(H) funding salaries, in whole or in part, for law enforcement officers, including patrol officers, detectives, and investigators, except that the percentage of the salary of the law enforcement officer paid for by funds from a grant awarded under subsection (b) shall not be more than the percentage of the officer’s time on duty that is dedicated to working on cases involving sex trafficking of minors;

(I) funding salaries for State and local prosecutors, including assisting in paying trial expenses for prosecution of sex trafficking offenders;

(J) investigation expenses for cases involving sex trafficking of minors, including—

(i) wire taps;

(ii) consultants with expertise specific to cases involving sex trafficking of minors;

(iii) travel; and

(iv) any other technical assistance expenditures;

(K) outreach and education programs to provide information about deterrence and prevention of sex trafficking of minors; and

(L) programs to provide treatment to individuals charged or cited with purchasing or attempting to purchase sex acts in cases where—

(i) a treatment program can be mandated as a condition of a sentence, fine, suspended sentence, or probation, or is an appropriate alternative to criminal prosecution; and

(ii) the individual was not charged with purchasing or attempting to purchase sex acts with a minor.

(3) PROHIBITED ACTIVITIES.—Grants awarded pursuant to subsection (b) shall not be used for medical care (as defined in section 2791(a)(2) of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 300gg–91)), except that grants may be used for mental health counseling as authorized under paragraph (2)(E).

(d) Application.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—Each eligible entity desiring a grant under this Act shall submit an application to the Assistant Attorney General at such time, in such manner, and accompanied by such information as the Assistant Attorney General may reasonably require.

(2) CONTENTS.—Each application submitted pursuant to paragraph (1) shall—

(A) describe the activities for which assistance under this section is sought; and

(B) provide such additional assurances as the Assistant Attorney General determines to be essential to ensure compliance with the requirements of this Act.

(e) Evaluation.—The Assistant Attorney General shall, in consultation with the Comptroller General of the United States, enter into a contract with an academic or non-profit organization that has experience in issues related to sex trafficking of minors and evaluation of grant programs to conduct an annual evaluation of grants made under this section to determine the impact and effectiveness of programs funded with grants awarded under subsection (b).

(f) Authorization of Appropriations.—For fiscal years 2011 through 2014, there are authorized to be appropriated, to carry out the provisions of this section, the following sums:

(1) $45,000,000 to fund grants awarded under subsection (b).

(2) $1,500,000 to conduct the evaluation under subsection (e).

(3) $3,500,000 to the Attorney General, to design and implement improvements to the National Crime Information Center database of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, established pursuant to section 534 of title 28, United States Code.

SEC. 5. Reporting requirements.

(a) Reporting requirement for State child welfare agencies.—

(1) REQUIREMENT FOR STATE CHILD WELFARE AGENCIES TO REPORT CHILDREN MISSING OR ABDUCTED.—Section 471(a) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 671(a)) is amended—

(A) in paragraph (32), by striking “and” after the semicolon;

(B) in paragraph (33), by striking the period and inserting “; and”; and

(C) by inserting after paragraph (33) the following:

“(34) provides that the State has in effect procedures that require the State agency to promptly report information on missing or abducted children to the law enforcement authorities for entry into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, established pursuant to section 534 of title 28, United States Code.”.

(2) REGULATIONS.—The Secretary of Health and Human Services shall promulgate regulations implementing the amendments made by paragraph (1). The regulations promulgated under this subsection shall include provisions to withhold Federal funds from any State that fails to substantially comply with the requirement imposed under the amendments made by paragraph (1).

(3) EFFECTIVE DATE.—The amendment made by paragraph (1) shall take effect on the date that is 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, without regard to whether final regulations required under paragraph (2) have been promulgated.

(b) Annual statistical summary.—Section 3701(c) of the Crime Control Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 5779(c)) is amended by inserting “, which shall include the total number of reports received and the total number of entries made to the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, established pursuant to section 534 of title 28, United States Code.” after “this title”.

(c) State reporting.—Section 3702 of the Crime Control Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 5780) is amended in paragraph (4)—

(1) by striking “(2)” and inserting “(3)”;

(2) in subparagraph (A), by inserting “, and a photograph taken within the previous 180 days ” after “dental records”;

(3) in subparagraph (B), by striking “and” after the semicolon;

(4) by redesignating subparagraph (C) as subparagraph (D); and

(5) by inserting after subparagraph (B) the following:

“(C) notify the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children of each report received relating to a child reported missing from a foster care family home or childcare institution; and”.