On Wednesday, March 21, the Senate voted overwhelmingly, 97-2, to pass FOSTA-SESTA, the anti-trafficking bill that modifies Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996. The bill will enable survivors of online commercial sex trafficking to sue the websites that facilitate this evil. It now goes to the President’s desk in the White House.
Legal Momentum is deeply grateful to all the supporters, survivors, activists, coalition partners, and other organizations that fought for this historic legislation. They are too numerous to mention individually. We are proud to have worked alongside all of them, the “Jane Doe” children, and all of the survivors who lined up, shoulder-to-shoulder, to push this urgently needed legislation forward.
Thanks to Senators Rob Portman, Richard Blumenthal, John McCain, Heidi Heitkamp, Claire McCaskill, and John Cornyn in the Senate, and also Representatives Ann Wagner, Mimi Walters, Sheila Jackson-Lee, and Kevin McCarthy in the House. Thanks as well to all the citizens who contacted their Congressional representatives to urge them to vote yes on FOSTA-SESTA.
With a 97-2 vote, this may seem like it was an easy victory. In fact, it has been a long road and a complicated task. Pain and injustice propelled this legislation, overcoming powerful opposition. In the voice of a survivor:
“Cries of hearts—hearts molested.
Who will hear them?
Courage: to care, to act, to do.
Restore dreams of life unfettered…”
This groundbreaking new legislation will protect trafficking victims and enable them to hold accountable companies that knowingly facilitate online trafficking. Our hearts are with the survivors.
"There is Life.
There is Hope."