Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Culver City), member of the House Judiciary Committee and Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth, released the following statement in reaction to reports that authorities in more than 70 cities apprehended 150 pimps involved in child sex trafficking during raids over the weekend:
“This is welcome news and I commend the efforts of authorities from across the nation who participated in these operations to save our most vulnerable youth from the physical abuse and exploitation associated with child sex trafficking,” Congresswoman Bass said.
“Their efforts again highlight the dire need to focus our attention on preventing child sex trafficking here in the United States, where over time, this has become a growing concern for too many local communities.
“ Of particular concern to me are the alarming statistics showing that far too many trafficking victims are either current or former foster youth. In my home town of Los Angeles, over 60 percent of child victims of trafficking either are or were foster youth and we know that pimps are now targeting foster youth group homes as hubs to recruit vulnerable girls.
“I hope to see more of this level of cooperation in combating child sex trafficking and will continue working in a bipartisan fashion to pass commonsense reforms on the national level, such as the “Strengthening the Child Welfare Response to Trafficking Act” to provide additional resources to end child sex trafficking.”