Home » William D King: House Passes Bill to Assist Victims of Sex Trafficking

William D King: House Passes Bill to Assist Victims of Sex Trafficking

The House passed a bill on May 23, 2013, to reauthorize the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, with overwhelming bipartisan support says, William D King. The measure now goes to President Obama for his signature.

House passage is a victory for human rights and evidence of strong congressional support for anti-trafficking initiatives. In essence, it is good news that bills of this nature are being passed by the House and signed into law.

The Trafficking Victims Protection Act, first authorize in 2000, is intend to combat international sex trafficking. Many of its provisions are incorporated in the new bill, which expands protections for victims of these crimes. It would also require more efforts to ensure that foreign-born people who are assisting law enforcement are not inappropriately detained or removed from the United States says, William D King.

The bill names three remarkable women who were trade into sex slavery after being promise jobs in the US. After their traffickers forced them to work long hours, they escaped and began new lives as private citizens. The House of Representatives originally passed this legislation on April 24, 2013.

The article is informative but does not attempt to address any of the proposed solutions from anti-trafficking scholars or organizations in regards to solving the problem of human trafficking explains William D King.  In this case, it is easy to see how one could think that a bill with such a positive effect would get support by everyone. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.  In fact, as the article points out, there were many people who opposed this bill because they thought that immigration reform should be a separate topic. This shows how difficult it can be to pass legislation that is to protect all members of society and why it is important for scholars and journalists to keep working towards a solution.

The website contains several links to other articles about the bill, most of which support its passage.  From all outside appearances, it would seem that passing this is uncontroversial.

Trafficking Victims Protection Act, Trafficking in Persons Report 2013, Trafficking in persons, Forced labor, Sex trafficking, Modern-day slavery, Sex slavery, Forced prostitution

Here are some FAQs recently asked by people who are actively writing or researching on trafficking:

Why don’t you just use the term slavery…I mean why do you have to use all these different terms?

First…we agree with you, slavery is the best word to describe what is happening in human trafficking says, William D King. However, certain groups disagree with us and consider it very offensive. So we try to avoid controversy by using specific words that will not offend anyone. Even though they may not be technically correct. Terms like “human trafficking” are acceptable to most everyone. And are technically correct even if they don’t reflect what is actually happening. It’s kind of like saying someone has died when he/she really passed away. It’s simply an attempt at being more politically correct.

What’s the difference between a trafficker and a pimp?

A trafficker is someone who sells another person for sex. They usually have control over their victims in some way. Through violence, threats, drugs, false promises of a better life, etc. A pimp generally has nothing to do with transportation or recruitment of his prostitutes. He simply grabs them when they are on the stroll and takes control of all the money they make. He keeps most everything and hands out very little for food/shelter/clothing. Whatever necessities his women need to stay working on the street. Pimps almost always physically abuse their prostitutes either in an attempt. To gain compliance or just because he feels like it.

Why don’t social workers just ask women if they were pimped/coerced into prostitution?

It’s not that simple. At first glance, many people assume that someone who is prostituting is willing and able to stop working the streets at any time. But this is probably one of the biggest misconceptions about prostitution. Many prostitutes really do enjoy what they do and feel a sense of freedom when on the stroll. So asking them if they are coercing would be coming from a place of judgment. So these women will simply lie to avoid feeling shame. Also, most prostitutes have a much-distorted view of their own reality. Because it has been hammering into their heads for so long by those who control them/traffic them/abuse them, etc. In sex trafficking


The Trafficking Victims Protection Act is a federal law. That was first passed by Congress in 2000 and then again in 2003. This act authorizes the government to take action against international trafficking. Sexual or labor exploitation, domestic sex trafficking of minors, and other related offenses. The act also outlines ways for law enforcement officials to work with foreign countries to stop human trafficking. This is a great law and it can also include labor trafficking as well as sex trafficking.

The language used in the bill covers prostitution. For example, Section 102(8) of the Act defines “severe forms of trafficking …..the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery”