Jun 29 2006

SHELBY ANNOUNCES $650,000 TO COMBAT CHILD PORNOGRAPHY AND HUMAN TRAFFICKING

FY 2007 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill Passes Senate Appropriations Committee

U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced subcommittee approval today of $650,000 in funding for the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children (ICMEC) to assist in combating child pornography and human trafficking. ICMEC is the sister agency of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. As a member of the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Shelby was instrumental in securing this funding. The State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bill will now go to the Senate floor for consideration.

Senator Shelby said, "I am pleased that the committee has recognized the merits of this request and agreed to provide $650,000 to further the work of the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children. This funding will help combat the terrible crimes of child pornography and human trafficking. I have repeatedly said that if someone was able to buy heroin over the internet with their credit card, people would be appalled. I believe the act of child pornography is much worse and it is imperative we eradicate this despicable crime. We must provide the necessary resources to protect our most vulnerable citizens, children, so they will not fall victim to this despicable act. I have long supported ICMEC efforts to protect our children and strongly believe that this funding will go a long way to aid in their good works.”

Child pornography is a multi-billion dollar global industry that exploits and abuses children. This funding will be utilized to attack the worldwide problem through ICMEC’s research to better define and measure the extent of the industry, examine and evaluate current law enforcement practices, and develop models for global use and replication. The program will focus on United States and European Union resources and experts.

Human trafficking is the third largest and fastest growing criminal industry in the world. We must address this problem through comprehensive and practical anti-trafficking strategies and programs. This program will help keep potential victims safe from this modern day slave trade.

Additional information on Shelby’s fight against child exploitation:

In addition to the funds secured above, Senator Shelby has been on the forefront of fighting child exploitation on the internet. Senator Shelby was the catalyst of the Financial Coalition Against Child Pornography, and has been instrumental in bringing financial industry leaders together to stop child pornography where its hurts the most: through its funding. For further information on Senator Shelby’s efforts, please see https://www.shelby.senate.gov/news/record.cfm?id=255724, https://www.shelby.senate.gov/news/record.cfm?id=252687, or https://www.shelby.senate.gov/news/record.cfm?id=256937.

Senator Shelby also serves as co-chair of the Missing and Exploited Children’s Caucus and is a steadfast advocate for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and their partners in the fight to end the exploitation of children.