On September 28, 2016 Congresswomen Ann Wagner (R-MO) and Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI), and Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Rob Portman (R-OH), introduced new bipartisan legislation, the Trafficking Survivors Relief Act of 2016, which enables human trafficking victims to clear federal convictions from their records for crimes that traffickers forced them to commit.
This bill is endorsed by ATEST and has been prioritized by the National Survivor Network. To read their press release on this legislation, click here.
This bill contains the following important provisions:
- A person convicted of non-violent federal offenses may petition a court to vacate the arrests and/or convictions if the person’s participation in the offense was thedirect result of having been a victim of trafficking;
- If a court grants the motion to vacate, the court vacates the arrest and/or conviction, enters a judgment of acquittal, and expunges the record;
- The trafficking victim’s identity is protected; no officer or employee may make public any document or image that identifies the victim; and
- Specified procedural processes to ensure that trafficking victims can establish eligibility for this provision by providing certified criminal or immigration court proceedings or law enforcement records demonstrating that the individual was a victim of trafficking at the time they were charged with the trafficking-related offense. If this information is not available, other testimony and sworn statements can also establish eligibility as many trafficking victims will not have official documentation because of the nature of human trafficking crimes.
To read the full letter click here.
To read a factsheet about this legislation click here.
To read the full bill text click here.
Legislative & Policy Committee:
Please mark your calendars for our upcoming MISSSEY Legislative & Policy Committee meetings taking place from 6:30pm to 8pm at the MISSSEY office, located at 436 14th Street, Suite 150, Oakland:
December 5, 2016
March 6, 2017
June 5, 2017
Let your voice be heard! We hope to see you at our next meeting.
Rose Mukhar & Yolanda Smith
Co-Chairs, MISSSEY Legislative & Policy Committee
Click here for highlights from our very first meeting!