Senate Sends Bill to President Designed to Keep Children Safe

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Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations Subcommittee Chairwoman Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.) today announced a critical step forward in putting $353.5 million to protect our nation’s children from predators and $28.1 billion for the Department of Justice to help fight crime and terrorism and protect communities in the federal checkbook.

The funds are included in the CJS Appropriations Bill, which was approved today by the Senate for a final time as part of Congress’ Fiscal Year 2010 Consolidated Appropriations Bill. It now goes to the President to be signed into law.

“We have made some amazing progress over the years, starting out with billboards and milk cartons. But crimes have gotten more sophisticated, and we’ve had to become more sophisticated,” Mikulski said. “Our bill focuses the resources of the federal government on child predators like a laser. I will keep doing my part in this war against child predators to help keep our children safe.”

Mikulski has fought for increased funding to provide DOJ with the tools they need to prevent, investigate and prosecute crimes against children, including:

  • $52.7 million for the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) Innocent Images program to catch deviants who use the Internet to prey on children and to break up international sex trafficking rings.
  • $40 million to expand federal, state and local law enforcement efforts to protect our nation’s most vulnerable by locating missing children, and targeting, dismantling and prosecuting predatory child molesters and those who traffic in child pornography.
  • $37 million to hire 50 new assistant U.S. Attorneys to prosecute sex offenders.
  • $72 million for the U.S. Marshals, which includes $27.5 million to hire 150 new Deputy U.S. Marshals to track down and arrest fugitive sex offenders.
  • $30 million to train state and local law enforcement to track down and arrest child predators stalking children on the Internet.
  • $24 million for local law enforcement predator units to detect, apprehend and prosecute sex offenders who victimize children.
  • $16 million for grants to school districts to keep kids safe at school with officers and equipment.
  • $12.5 million for counseling, witness protection and relocation for victims of trafficking.
  • $5 million for the FBI’s Innocence Lost program to rescue children forced into prostitution and sex trafficking.

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