Lawmakers praise financial industry’s human trafficking barriers

Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) recently praised the financial industry’s efforts to thwart the work of human traffickers.

The lawmakers are supporting the Senate Banking Committee’s inclusion of a provision in the BRINK Act that would combat human trafficking. The language is based on the End Banking for Human Traffickers Act, which was originally introduced by Warren and Rubio earlier this year.

The legislators said the language requires federal banking regulators to work with law enforcement and financial institutions to address the use of the financial system for human trafficking while establishing an office within the Office for Terrorism and Financial Crimes to coordinate with the Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.

“Twenty-one million people from all across the globe have been forced into unpaid labor and sexual exploitation,” Warren said. “This bill gives the Treasury Department a bigger role in combatting trafficking and preventing the perpetrators from profiting off the lives of human beings. I look forward to working with the members of the Banking Committee to see this become law.”

Preventing traffickers from accessing the banking system, which they use to finance their illegal operations, is critical to stopping human trafficking, officials said. Lawmakers said the provision would help provide additional support to financial institutions, federal regulators, and law enforcement to stop human traffickers in their tracks.

“Human trafficking is one of the most urgent human rights issues of our time,” Rubio said. “This bill helps provide financial institutions and law enforcement with additional support to hold perpetrators accountable. I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure this bill becomes law.”