Since 2006, HHS has used the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) as a sub-grantor for services to help human trafficking victims, paid for with taxpayer dollars. As our news release explains:
Through the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, the federal government distributes funds to cover an array of services needed by the more than 14,000 individuals, predominantly women, who are brought into the United States annually and exploited for their labor, including in the commercial sex industry. Many trafficking victims experience extreme violence and sexual assault at the hands of their traffickers. Some become pregnant as a result of rape and some contract sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, according to today’s legal papers.
That’s why it’s wrong for the government to accede to the USCCB’s policy of not supporting contraceptive or abortion services with the federal funds it administers — the victims of this mistreatment need to have their options open.