Topic

sex trafficking

21 petitions

Update posted 5 days ago

Petition to Bill Haslam, Tennessee State Senate, Lamar Alexander, Tennessee Governor, Attorney Charles Bone, Tennessee State House

***HELP DEMAND JUSTICE*** #FREECYNTOIABROWN #JUSTICE

Cyntoia Brown, a 16-year old sentenced to life for the killing of Johnny Allen. Cyntoia Brown had been given up for adoption by her biological mother, Georgina Mitchell, when she was two years old. When Georgina became pregnant with Cyntoia, she continued consuming alcohol which may have resulted in fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Georgina began using crack cocaine when Cyntoia was eight months old and Cyntoia was given up to Ellenette Brown. Even though Ellenette Brown provided a generally stable home, Cyntoia had not had sufficient stability in her life for proper emotional development and by 2004 had become a runaway. Sixteen-year-old Cyntoia Brown's sexual encounters had included many rapes, assaults during or before sex, and times when she was under the influence of drugs. Brown had a physically and sexually abusive pimp named "Kutthroat", who brandished guns at her and forced her into prostitution. Brown was picked up by a 43-year-old real estate agent, Johnny Allen and taken to his house on August 6, 2004. Brown stated that for several weeks, she had been repeatedly raped and was on drugs. When she arrived at Allen's house, she found it was full of guns. Brown said that she was afraid that she would be shot, which led her to shoot and kill Allen. Cyntoia Brown was then arrested for Allen's murder. From the day of her arrest she sat for six years until the start of her trial and she was convicted.  She requested an assessment by Dr. William Bernet, a juvenile forensic psychiatrist from Vanderbilt University. She was found to have had a difficult childhood, but was considered competent to stand trial, and therefore tried as an adult, at the age of sixteen. She requested to testify on her own behalf at her trial, to tell her own story, but her legal team advised her not to do so. Prosecutors argued that her motive for killing Allen, a child rapist and predator who bought her from her pimp, drugged and raped her daily, was robbery.  Brown was sentenced to 51 years to life for first degree murder. The prosecutor of the case had argued for life without parole by stating the importance of ensuring that dangerous and violent people are imprisoned, regardless of the circumstances that may have arisen to make them violent. After her conviction, her story caught the eye of a prominant Tennessee Attorney, Charles Bone, a Nashville attorney, who decided to join Brown's attorneys on the case. They argued for a new trial, particularly to allow Brown to testify on her behalf, something that was discouraged by her attorneys in the original case, to present evidence, and evidence about her developmental delays due to fetal alcohol syndrome. Brown’s new trial is in the appeal process as she sits in adult prison as the VICTIM.  Brown is currently serving her sentence at the Tennessee Prison for Women. Did we somehow change the definition of #JUSTICE along the way?? Because.... Something is horribly wrong when the system ENABLES these rapists and the VICTIM is thrown away for life! To each of you responsible for this CHILD’S sentence, I hope to God you don't have children, because this could be your daughter being punished for punishing already!!!!!!!! PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION AND HELP ME GET JUSTICE FOR THIS BEAUTIFUL YOUNG GIRL WHO DOES NOT BELONG IN PRISON FOR THE ACTIONS SHE TOOK AGAINST HER PREDATOR/RAPIST. THE TENNESSEE JUSTICE SYSTEM HAS TAKEN AWAY THE REST OF HER CHILDHOOD AND ENTIRE ADULTHOOD, AND SHE WAS ALREADY ROBBED OF HER ENTIRE YOUTH. I WANT THIS CHILD TO KNOW LOVE DOES EXIST AND THE WORLD IS NOT ALL EVIL. I WANT CYNTOIA TO KNOW THAT THERE ARE PEOPLE OUT HERE WHO SAW HER STORY, LISTENED, AND CARE ENOUGH TO DEMAND CHANGE AND JUSTICE FOR HER. PLEASE SIGN, SHARE, POST THE LINK ON YOUR MEDIA PAGES... AND WHEN THERE ARE ENOUGH SIGNATURES THE PETITION WILL BE SENT TO THE TENNESSEE GOVENOR, DEPT OF CORRECTIONS, SENATE REP, HER ATTORNIES, CONGRESS.... THANK YOU!!!! #ISTANDWITHCYNTOIA #JUSTICEFORCYNTOIA#FREECYNTOIABROWN #HOWMANYMORE    

Allison Miletto
26,593 supporters
This petition won 7 days ago

Petition to Steve Knight

Stop Online Sex Trafficking of Children

Up to 80% of sex trafficked children are sold online through internet sites.Craiglist has voluntarily shut down it's Adult section to help stop internet sex trafficking; however, Backpage.com hid behind the 1st Amendment, Section 230 of the Communication Decency Act (CDA) avoiding the closure of their Adult services winning several lawsuits until July, 2017 when they were finally ordered to shut down the site and are currently being prosecuted. "The Allow State and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017" will amend the CDA by 1) Eliminating provisions that shields operators of websites from being liable for content posted by 3rd parties/users, and 2) Allow state prosecutors, not just federal law enforcement, to take action against individuals and businesses that use websites to violate federal sex trafficking laws. While sex workers and free speech advocates argue against the bill saying it violates the 1st amendment and greatly affects the sex worker industry, prostitution is currently illegal throughout most of the US. By passing this bill, the horrors done to innocent children will greatly be impacted. The protection of children is far greater than the need for safer, more convenient adult sex sales services. Adult sex workers argue that the internet is safer than walking the streets. However, as a nation we need to protect these children and put a stop to the growing industry of sex trafficking. Passing this bill will provide the legislation needed to derail this horrific industry. Congresswomen Ann Wagner, R-Mo proclaims, "Congress never intended for Section 230 to give a free pass to the retailers of America's children, and we must address the judicial interpretation of the law and provide a voice for the most vulnerable in our society. This legislation gives U.S. law enforcement officials, prosecutors, and victims the tools they need to help dismantle the human trafficking trade in the United States." If this bill does not pass, we risk the given that future internet providers will  create new sites, only taking the place of Backpage.com and providing a conduit for trafficking enabling the sex traffickers and those who purchase children for sex.

Marcy Peters
101 supporters
Started 4 weeks ago

Petition to Jay Costa, Pennsylvania State Senate, Robert Casey, Tom Wolf, Pat Toomey, Pennsylvania State House, Andrew Dinniman, Patricia Vance, Stan Saylor, Brendan Boyle, Frank Farry, Glenn Thompson, Mike Kelly, Tim Murphy, Tom Marino, Mike Doyle, Dan Miller, Robert Freeman, Marguerite Quinn, Matthew Cartwright, Lou Barletta, Scott Perry, Charlie Dent, Bill Shuster, Florindo Fabrizio, Robert Brady

Support Safe Harbor Legislation for Sexually Exploited Children

The average age of commercially sexually exploited children is 14. Juvenile victims of sexual exploitation face a life continually threatened by torture, rape, broken bones, fractures, and extreme psychological manipulation to such an extent that most victims develop symptoms of Stockholm Syndrome as a result of having been trafficked. According to the International Labor Organization, 4.5 million illegally trafficked individuals are forcibly sexually exploited, and 21% of those individuals are estimated to be less than 18 years of age. Children who are victimized in the illegal sex trade are still criminalized in the state of Pennsylvania. The state contends that it is legal for juvenile victims of sex trafficking to receive criminal charges for prostitution, public indecency, obstruction of highways and other public passages. According to the Field Center for Children’s Policy, Practice & Research at the University of Pennsylvania, Shared Hope’s Protected Innocence Challenge conducted a study of state laws in 2015 that addressed domestic minor sex trafficking. They found that Pennsylvania ranked 35th on the effectiveness of 41 legislative components addressing domestic minor sex trafficking. In regards to Pennsylvania’s attempts to address protective provisions for juvenile victims, it ranked 45th out of 51 states, with the addition of Washington D.C. Senate Bill No. 554, the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund, which proposes to provide special relief for juvenile victims of sexual exploitation in order to restore dignity, provide necessary services, ensure safety, and provide a safe harbor for sexually exploited children. Provisions proposed by the bill include: reimbursement of funds for the costs of removing a tattoo or identifying mark left on the victim by their pimp, safe and stable housing, access to education, employment and life-skills training, comprehensive case management, healthcare and trauma-based therapy, access to personal care items and adequate clothing, treatment for drug and/or alcohol dependency, and other supportive services.  Supporting this petition will make a difference in the lives of children who have experienced severe trauma and chronic emotional, physical, and sexual abuse. The sexual exploitation of juveniles is both an international and domestic issue. Supporting Safe Harbor Legislation in the State of Pennsylvania will make provisions for vulnerable children who have been exposed to extremely traumatic and chronic abuse. Additionally, this legislation has the potential to create a societal paradigm shift in which victims of forced prostitution can be rightly understood and cared for as victims, rather than as criminals. I urge you to support this bill and encourage Pennsylvania to join the two thirds of the United States that have taken a stance against the sexual exploitation of minors. I have both volunteered and worked professionally with individuals who have experienced crises related to trauma, domestic violence, and sexual assault. This form of trauma shakes people to the foundation of their being. We will not be able to foster and sustain an exploitation-free society, if we are not empowering people to heal. The ramifications of criminalizing children who have experienced trauma in the form of violence and sexual exploitation are severe in terms of the implications they carry for the future of rape culture and the social acceptability of violence.

Kai Smith
174,846 supporters
Update posted 4 weeks ago

Petition to Congressional Committees on Commerce, Science and Transportation and on Energy and Commerce, U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives

Hold Websites Accountable for Aiding and Abetting Human Trafficking

Did you know that when websites profit from the illegal activity of human trafficking, they are not held accountable? In the event that a company profits from the sale of victims of trafficking (including minors), they can use Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act as a defense. Section 230 provides websites with blanket immunity from “third party content”. This was designed to protect websites from being prosecuted when someone visiting their site posts inappropriate or even illegal content without the site’s knowledge or approval. It was NOT designed to grant immunity when a website actively PROFITS from third party content.  Eastern North Carolina Stop Human Trafficking Now is one of several anti-trafficking organizations that are seeking a change to the CDA.  In order to stop human trafficking, we must take action to make access to this crime more difficult. Section 230 had good intentions, but it has been used to protect various companies that profit from advertising sex trafficking of women and children.  If websites profit from crimes such as human trafficking, they should be held accountable.  We must urge lawmakers to amend the Communications Decency Act if we want to see a decrease in trafficking and exploitation in the US. Join us in asking Congress to amend  the Communications Decency Act so that 1. State and local law enforcement agencies have the authority to arrest and prosecute websites that advertise human trafficking victims and 2. The protections that websites currently enjoy from being held liable for third party content when they profit from that content is eliminated.

ENC Stop Human Trafficking NOW
6,626 supporters