Fighting for Florida
Earlier today in Miami, Senator Rubio held a human trafficking-related press conference with local elected officials after a tour of the Kristi House’s Emergency Drop-in Shelter. The event served to raise awareness about the human trafficking problem in Florida and across the country as well as highlight recent government efforts to combat it.
At the event, Rubio highlighted several of his legislative efforts in the fight against human trafficking, urging Congress to re-authorize the Trafficking Victims Protection Act and pass the End Trafficking in Government Contracting Act of 2012, a bill he and his colleagues introduced earlier this year. Rubio also reiterated the importance of demanding action from Village Voice Media executives.
Earlier today, Senators Rubio, Kirk, Blumenthal, Cornyn, Durbin, and Akaka wrote a letter to Scott Tobias, CEO of the newly formed Voice Media Group, Inc. outlining the necessary steps the company should take to end online prostitution advertising.
Nineteen U.S. senators, 51 attorneys general, dozens of human rights organizations, clergy members and citizens have called for Village Voice Media to do the right thing and eliminate the “adult entertainment” section of Backpage.com, a major facilitator of child sex trafficking and the leading website for prostitution solicitation in the U.S. Instead, executives chose to avoid the public relations disaster Backpage.com caused by opening a new company to control all of Village Voice Media’s assets except for Backpage.com.
Senator Rubio and his five colleagues expressed their disappointment in the lack of action these executives took to end the sexual exploitation of minors on Backpage.com and insisted the executives “take the steps necessary to terminate the prostitution advertising on Backpage.” The senators affirmed they would “continue to hold any current or former Village Voice Media subsidiaries and related successor corporate structures accountable until such action has been achieved.”