Westerman Applauds Passage of Sex-Trafficking Legislation

January 27, 2015
Press Release


WASHINGTON – Congressman Bruce Westerman (R-Hot Springs) issued the following statement upon Tuesday's vote on H.R. 159, the Stop Exploitation Through Trafficking Act which Westerman co-sponsored, as well as suspension bills that would strengthen federal laws aimed at combatting human sex trafficking:

"I was pleased to be able to vote in favor of these bills that make American laws tougher for those who engage in human sex-trafficking. These bills mirror similar bi-partisan legislation passed when I was in the Arkansas General Assembly. H.R. 159 specifically provides assistance for victims of human sex-trafficking through providing Jobs Corps benefits during their recovery. These bills are important steps in our continued efforts to stop human sex-trafficking not just in Arkansas, but in the United States and abroad."

Also on Tuesday, Congressman Westerman took part in a bi-partisan press conference on the bills along with Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-OH), Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA), Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL), Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC), Rep. Kristi Noem (R-SD), Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-MN), Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX), Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ), Rep. Jason Smith (R-MO), Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY), and Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO).

Bills voted on Tuesday in addition to H.R. 159 include: H.R. 468 (Enhancing Services for Runaway and Homeless Victims for Youth Trafficking Act of 2015), H.R. 469 (Strengthening Child Welfare Response to Trafficking Act of 2015), H.R. 246 (a bill to improve the response to victims of child sex trafficking), H.R. 514 (Human Trafficking Prioritization Act), H.R. 515 (International Megan's Law to Prevent Demand for Child Sex Trafficking), and H.R. 357 (Human Trafficking Prevention Act).

* Photos of the press conference may be downloaded for republication and/or broadcast at www.flickr.com/photos/repwesterman.

About Rep. Bruce Westerman

A lifelong resident of Garland County, Congressman Bruce Westerman was elected the 20th representative of Arkansas's Fourth Congressional District in 2014. In the 114th Congress, he will serve on the Committee on Natural Resources, the Committee on the Budget, and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.

Elected twice to serve in the Arkansas General Assembly, Westerman was Arkansas's first Republican House Majority Leader since Reconstruction, and an architect of the House Republican SIMPLE Plan which led to the 2013 Republican takeover of the Arkansas House of Representatives.

An engineer and forester for 22 years at Mid-South Engineering in Hot Springs, Westerman is a registered professional engineer and forester. He holds a Master of Forestry degree (2001) from Yale University. In 2013, he was named Engineer of the Year by the Arkansas Society of Professional of Engineers.

Westerman graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological and Agricultural Engineering from the University of Arkansas in 1990. While at Arkansas, Westerman was a four-year walk-on member of the Razorback Football Team. He received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award in 2005 and the Distinguished Alumni Award in 2012.

Westerman is a former board member of the Fountain Lake School District and is a deacon at Walnut Valley Baptist Church. He lives in Hot Springs with his wife Sharon and their four children.

For more information on Rep. Bruce Westerman, please visit https://westerman.house.gov and follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/RepWesterman and Facebook at https://facebook.com/RepWesterman.