As many of you know, Exodus Cry recently had an extraordinary opportunity to raise awareness and educate legislators in the United States. In July, we traveled to Capitol Hill where we presented a screening of Nefarious and an important research proposal to members of the U.S. Congress. Thanks to all of you who contacted your representatives to urge them to attend, over 50 Congressional representatives and staff members saw Nefarious. The following day we had additional face-to-face meetings with congressional representatives and discussed our reform research in more detail.
At the last meeting of the day, something unexpected happened. After hearing our ideas for reform, Congressman Frank Wolf immediately contacted the office of Congressman Chris Smith, the government’s foremost anti-trafficking leader and the author of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000. After discussing our research both offices were convinced that this was an urgent need and something that should be addressed immediately. That day they told us that they wanted to include our proposed ideas into a bill that was coming up for a vote the following week. Just one week later, with assistance from Congresswoman Kay Granger, the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill was updated to include the following report language:
“Demand for commercial sex contributes to the phenomenon of human trafficking and is generally higher in countries where purchase of commercial sex is legal. As such, the committee urges the State Department, when determining, for the purposes of the annual Trafficking in Persons Report, whether a country is making serious and sustained efforts to reduce demand for commercial sex acts, to consider whether there is legal sanction against the purchase of commercial sex acts.”
The wording was officially passed in a turn of events that seemed nothing less than miraculous. One Deputy Chief of Staff said, “[Getting this language included] was like showing up at the last minute to the Superbowl on the day of the sold-out game and finding a front row ticket on the floor.”
Realistically, this amendment could have taken months–or even years–to pass. Instead, this important development occurred after just one screening and just one day of meetings. We believe this was something only God could orchestrate. Our Reform Team remains committed to our work in D.C. The challenging next step will be for congressmen to get the concepts of this amendment signed into law as part of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act. With the support of congressional representatives as displayed in our recent visit to Capitol Hill, these updates could ensure that our nation makes reducing the demand for sex trafficking victims a priority for years to come.
The amount of favor we have had is unbelievable. We want to thank members and staff of the United States Congress who were so accommodating throughout our stay. We’d especially like to thank Representative Randy Hultgren and his staff and Representative Frank Wolf and his staff for partnering with us to host the screening and for taking a public stand against the injustice of human trafficking. We also want to thank all of the representatives and staff members who met with us as well as those who expressed interest in moving forward toward abolition. Last but not least, we want to thank each of you who contacted your representatives and faithfully stood with us in prayer for this screening. We recognize that without prayer and without the divine intervention of God and his favor upon us, none of this would have been possible.
Read our full reform research here: exoduscry.com/resources ›