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Jan-14-2014 11:58printcomments

Stolen Innocence

Child trafficking is happening here.

Child trafficking is happening here.
Child trafficking is happening here.

(WASHINGTON, DC) - Right now, more than 5 million children around the world are trapped in misery by traffickers – forced to work without pay in factories or on farms, in prostitution or pornography, or as beggars on the streets.

Even right here in the United States. In all 50 states. Childhood innocence is being stolen on our watch.

But there is hope for these children. Right now, Congress is considering bipartisan legislation that provides valuable resources to vulnerable children in Oregon – but without your help, the bill could fall by the wayside.

Ask your representative to stand up for children and get them the help they need before they become victims of human trafficking.

Unlike many proposals in Washington these days, this bill has support from Republicans and Democrats. Protecting children is a bipartisan issue, but lawmakers won't act unless they feel the pressure from people like you and me. They expect to hear from their constituents including you – and it only takes a minute to send your message.

This is urgent, because as I write, our child welfare systems are failing to protect thousands of vulnerable children. In fact, as many as 85 percent of children who are rescued from exploitation rings have had contact with child welfare systems, including foster care. Homeless and runaway kids face especially high risks of exploitation and slavery.

This bill would require the Department of Health and Human Services to provide guidelines to child welfare agencies to help survivors and protect youth at risk of human trafficking

The bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives and the Senate, but it won't move – and keep children out of modern-day slavery – without more support. Urge your Members of Congress to co-sponsor this bill by January 17.

UNICEF is working to protect children from exploitation and abuse in more than 150 countries around the world. With your help today, we can protect them right here in the United States too. Congress needs to hear from UNICEF supporters like you to make a real impact in the fight against child trafficking.

Make your voices heard – so that every child can have a life that is free of exploitation.

Thank you for taking action today.

Fondly,

Caryl M. Stern
Caryl M. Stern
President & CEO
U.S. Fund for UNICEF

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