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This is an incredible and an unusual kind of hearing because of the promise of freedom of the 13th amendment, a promise written from the suffering of all of those who have been held in bondage. Sadly, involuntary servitude lives on in this country long after Emancipation Day. Freedom can only be advanced through sustained determination. The Civil Rights Movement could only occur after the change of peonage and exploitation had been broken in the late 1940’s by the NAACP and, as well, the FBI and the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Section all working together. The same type of collaboration is happening today with nonprofit groups and the Government working together to confront trafficking for modern slavery. Here in Congress we must work to ensure that they have the tools they need to fulfill the living promise of the 13th amendment, and that essentially is what this hearing is about today. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act was a groundbreaking, bipartisan effort to update our involuntary servitude statutes and to create victim protections. I thank for this cooperation the Ranking Member of the Judiciary, Lamar Smith. It is a bipartisan bill, recently introduced with both Chairman Tom Lantos’ and Congress Member Chris Smith’s reauthorizing the statute. The principal features include immigration avenues to protect victims and their families from retaliation and to ensure that children are protected, assistance to U.S. citizens who fall prey to modern slavery or who are caught up by pimps or other types of criminal social activity, more flexibility in the ability to employ seroperators and others who retaliate against escapees. The measure does not, however, create a general Federal antipimping statute or import the Mann Act into the trafficking and slavery statutes, as some have advocated. It is proper to seek compassionate responses for persons in prostitution, but we do not need to conflate prostitution and slavery or change settled bipartisan definitions of the TVPA and international law to accomplish this worthy goal. The bill is named after the British parliamentarian William Wilberforce, who fought so hard to end the Transatlantic slave trade 200 years ago. There is a university named in his honor. I am proud that we are following in his footsteps to stand against slavery and exploitation in the modern era, and I express, again, amazement that it is so prominent and is a subject matter of such notoriety that we need to meet this afternoon on it. I am now pleased to introduce Lamar Smith, the Ranking Member of the Judiciary, for his comments.