For more than a year, World Vision has advocated for reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA). The law, which represents the cornerstone of U.S. policies to fight modern-day slavery, expired on September 30, 2011, because Congress did not vote to reauthorize it in time.
As a result, U.S. efforts to combat trafficking are essentially on hold until the law is reauthorized.
Here is an update from World Vision's child protection policy advisor, Jesse Eaves.
* * *
I’ve never really liked April Fools Day, because it’s possible I’m one of the most gullible people ever. I fall for every joke and prank.
Six months ago, if you had told me that by April 1, 2012, Congress still would not have reauthorized the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, I would have declared my gullibility streak over. Up until now, this bill has always been passed and reauthorized unanimously. How could it ever get so stuck?
Sadly, the joke is on us. Even worse, it's a joke on 27 million enslaved people around the world.
Tell Congress: “We’re tired of the game.”
Six months have passed since Congress allowed the expiration of the centerpiece of all U.S. policies on human trafficking. Every day that the TVPA languishes is symbolic of America surrendering our role as a global leader in combating trafficking.
Thankfully, advocates like you don’t find this joke amusing. One month ago, a group of World Vision advocates came to Washington to tell their elected leaders that they were tired of the game. They told their leaders to get moving. And it’s working.
We have seen six new cosponsors join the Senate bill (S.1301) and are expecting a seventh any day now. Prior to that flurry of activity, we had not seen anyone sign on since January. In short, things could start happening in a hurry.
There are now 40 cosponsors in the Senate. We gained 6 in March. How about we try for 51 by the end of April? That means a majority of the Senate supports the bill.
Better yet, if we can get to 60, it will leave Senate leaders no choice but to bring this bill to the vote it’s deserved for so long. Help us get to 60! Tell your senators it’s time to act.
We are focusing on the Senate for a reason. Once the Senate bill passes, the pressure on the House of Representatives to break its partisan deadlock will be tremendous. Our leaders need to know this is too important for them not to act.
Call or tweet your senators
Your leaders are listening, but we need to be clear with them: Enough already. The joke isn’t funny. It’s time to rise above slavery.
Use our call form to look up your senators' numbers and log your call. We also provide the call script in this tool. The message is short and simple.
If you are part of the Twitterverse, tweet these senators to tell them to reauthorize the TVPA. Just click on the buttons to the right to send your tweets! (Senators whose names aren't listed below have already agreed to cosponsor the bill.)
|ALASKA||Mark Begich (D)||Tweet|
|ALASKA||Lisa Murkowski (R)||Tweet|
|ALABAMA||Jeff Sessions (R)||Tweet|
|ALABAMA||Richard C Shelby (R)||Tweet|
|ARKANSAS||John Boozman (R)||Tweet|
|ARIZONA||Jon Kyl (R)||Tweet|
|ARIZONA||John McCain (R)||Tweet|
|DELAWARE||Thomas Carper (D)||Tweet|
|HAWAII||Daniel K Inouye (D)||Tweet|
|IOWA||Chuck Grassley (R)||Tweet|
|IOWA||Tom Harkin (D)||Tweet|
|IDAHO||Mike Crapo (R)||Not on Twitter|
|IDAHO||James E Risch (R)||Not on Twitter|
|ILLINOIS||Mark Kirk (R)||Tweet|
|INDIANA||Daniel Coats (R)||Tweet|
|INDIANA||Richard G Lugar (R)||Tweet|
|KANSAS||Jerry Moran (R)||Tweet|
|KANSAS||Pat Roberts (R)||Tweet|
|KENTUCKY||Mitch McConnell (R)||Tweet|
|KENTUCKY||Rand Paul (R)||Tweet|
|LOUISIANA||David Vitter (R)||Tweet|
|MAINE||Olympia J Snowe (R)||Tweet|
|MAINE||Susan M Collins (R)||Tweet|
|MICHIGAN||Carl Levin (D)||Tweet|
|MISSOURI||Roy Blunt (R)||Tweet|
|MISSOURI||Claire McCaskill (D)||Tweet|
|MISSISSIPPI||Roger F Wicker (R)||Tweet|
|MONTANA||Max Baucus (D)||Tweet|
|NORTH DAKOTA||Kent Conrad (D)||Not on Twitter|
|NORTH DAKOTA||John Hoeven (R)||Tweet|
|NEBRASKA||Mike Johanns (R)||Tweet|
|NEBRASKA||Ben Nelson (D)||Tweet|
|NEW HAMPSHIRE||Kelly Ayotte (R)||Tweet|
|NEW HAMPSHIRE||Jeanne Shaheen (D)||Tweet|
|NEW JERSEY||Frank R Lautenberg (D)||Tweet|
|NEW MEXICO||Jeff Bingaman (D)||Not on Twitter|
|NEW MEXICO||Tom Udall (D)||Tweet|
|NEVADA||Harry Reid (D)||Tweet|
|OKLAHOMA||Tom Coburn (R)||Tweet|
|OKLAHOMA||James M Inhofe (R)||Tweet|
|PENNSYLVANIA||Patrick J Toomey (R)||Tweet|
|RHODE ISLAND||Jack Reed (D)||Not on Twitter|
|RHODE ISLAND||Sheldon Whitehouse (D)D)||Tweet|
|SOUTH CAROLINA||Jim DeMint (R)||Tweet|
|SOUTH CAROLINA||Lindsey Graham (R)||Tweet|
|SOUTH DAKOTA||Tim Johnson (D)||Tweet|
|SOUTH DAKOTA||John Thune (R)||Tweet|
|TENNESSEE||Lamar Alexander (R)||Tweet|
|TENNESSEE||Bob Corker (R)||Tweet|
|TEXAS||John Cornyn (R)||Tweet|
|TEXAS||Kay Bailey Hutchison (R)R)||Tweet|
|UTAH||Orrin G Hatch (R)||Tweet|
|UTAH||Mike Lee (R)||Tweet|
|VIRGINIA||Mark R Warner (D)||Tweet|
|VIRGINIA||Jim Webb (D)||Not on Twitter|
|WISCONSIN||Ron Johnson (R)||Tweet|
|WISCONSIN||Herb Kohl (D)||Not on Twitter|
|WEST VIRGINIA||Joe Manchin III (D)||Tweet|
|WEST VIRGINIA||John D Rockefeller, IV (D)D)||Tweet|
|WYOMING||John Barrasso (R)||Tweet|
|WYOMING||Michael B Enzi (R)||Not on Twitter|
These calls and tweets matter. We need your prayers, and we need your voices. You helped get this important piece of legislation unstuck in March. Now, let’s pull it through the finish line in April.