By Senators Chase, Fraser, Darneille, Nelson, Kohl-Welles, Keiser, Rolfes, and Billig
WHEREAS, Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery in which force, fraud, or coercion is used to force adults into disagreeable labor or sexual exploitation or children and youth for child sexual exploitation; and
WHEREAS, The United Nations International Labor Organization estimates that 20.9 million people worldwide are trafficked, exploited, or enslaved as forced labor, bonded labor, forced child labor, sexual exploitation or servitude, or involuntary servitude; and
WHEREAS, Human trafficking and slavery, including sex and labor trafficking, affect women and children the most, with an estimated 80 percent of trafficked people being women and children; and
WHEREAS, Child labor deprives children of their childhood, life-long potential, and dignity, and is mentally, physically, socially, and morally harmful; and
WHEREAS, In 2000, the United States Congress passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, most recently reauthorized in 2013, providing tools for the United States to use to combat human trafficking at home and abroad; and
WHEREAS, Since the passage of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, the United States government has successfully prosecuted human trafficking crimes in agricultural fields, sweatshops, suburban mansions, brothels, escort services, bars, strip clubs, and many other places; and
WHEREAS, Since 2009, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has obtained convictions of 258 people for human trafficking, including in the State of Washington; and
WHEREAS, Worldwide, 67 countries are not in compliance with international minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking; and
WHEREAS, March 2nd marked the 20th anniversary of the shooting at the King County Courthouse that claimed the lives of three women: Pregnant, trafficked, and abused mail-order bride Susana Blackwell from the Philippines and her two friends, Phoebe Dizon and Veronica Laureta; and
WHEREAS, In 2000, mail-order bride Anastasia Solovieva-King from Kyrgyzstan was murdered by her husband in Washington State in a separate incident of both domestic violence and bride trafficking; and
WHEREAS, Since 2002, the Washington State Legislature has been the first state in the United States to create a State Anti-Trafficking of Persons Task Force; safety measures for mail-order brides; and a definition of human trafficking crimes at the state level; and
WHEREAS, In 2004, an Advisory Committee on Trafficking was convened by the United States Attorney's Office for the Western District of Washington, creating a multidisciplinary team to collaborate locally, nationally, and internationally; and
WHEREAS, According to the Washington State Attorney General's Office, 55 percent of global internet child pornography is initiated in the United States, with the child victims often being runaway, troubled, and homeless youth; and
WHEREAS, The Washington Anti-Trafficking Response Network reports that they have seen cases of young men and boys exploited in the construction industry, and immigrants and others exploited by restaurants, small businesses, agriculture, and the commercial sex industry; and
WHEREAS, The Washington State Legislature enacted 36 anti-trafficking laws between 2002-2014, and has been recognized by Shared Hope International and the Polaris Project as being among the very top states in the country for anti-trafficking advocacy and legislation;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, That the Washington State Senate supports increased education, stronger laws and law enforcement, and the promotion of justice to reduce the exploitation of all people, including women and children.
I, Hunter G. Goodman, Secretary of the Senate,
do hereby certify that this is a true and
correct copy of Senate Resolution 8644,
adopted by the Senate
March 19, 2015
Secretary of the Senate