Washington, D.C. — Penny Young Nance, the CEO and President of Concerned Women for America, issued the following statement following the Senate passage of H.R. 1865, the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act (FOSTA). The legislation now heads to the president’s desk:
“Yesterday the Senate made crucial strides to curtail the gruesome practice of selling human beings online, a practice our laws were never meant to enable. Once the president signs FOSTA, survivors and law enforcement will have new tools available to hold bad actor websites that are knowingly participating in sex trafficking accountable.
“While the Internet has given us so much good, Congress could not have foreseen the depravity and exploitation that it has caused, and if they could have, they certainly would have never condoned this behavior. The laws put in place to foster innovation were never meant to enable sex trafficking. This concept is so obvious; it is absurd that we even had to clarify it.
“This is a victory for law enforcement officers who are working relentlessly to combat sex trafficking in their communities. This is a victory for prosecutors and the 50 state attorneys general who support FOSTA and who have asked for better tools and resources so that they can better prosecute those involved in sex trafficking. Perhaps most importantly, this is a victory for victims who have encountered substantial obstacles while trying to achieve justice against those found complicit in their trafficking.
“I applaud the tireless work of Rep. Ann Wagner (R-Missouri) and her staff who have worked on the federal, state, and local level to preserve the freedom of the Internet while holding bad actor websites accountable. I also applaud Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), House and Senate leadership, and all those involved in making this legislation stronger and moving it forward.”