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WASHINGTON — Eight members of Congress who are leading efforts to eliminate the trafficking of people nationwide were recognized by the Trucking Cares Foundation during a reception on Capitol Hill on Jan. 15.
Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins, a leader on the transportation funding panel, was among the recipients of the group’s Hero Award. Over the years, the senator has sponsored legislation that targeted online outlets that reportedly provided a forum that critics said had facilitated sex trafficking. Most recently, Collins partnered with Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy (D) on a bill titled, “Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act of 2019.”
“Every state in America is affected by this evil,” Collins said at the awards presentation the foundation hosted. “We must not seize our efforts until we truly [have] brought an end to human trafficking.”
Chris Spear, president of American Trucking Associations, referred to Collins as a “leading Senate Republican advocate on this issue for many, many years.”
Besides Collins, other Hero Award recipients were Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), John Thune (R-S.D.) and Catherine Cortez-Masto (D-Nev.). From the U.S. House, recipients included Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), Kay Granger (R-Texas), Jim Costa (D-Calif.) and John Katko (R-N.Y.).
Trucking Cares Foundation is proud to recognize the following Congressional champions w/ the 2020 Hero Award for their efforts to eradicate #humantrafficking: @AmyKlobuchar @SenatorCollins @SenCortezMasto @SenJohnThune @RepJohnKatko @RepKayGranger @RepJimCosta @CarolynBMaloney pic.twitter.com/1AAcaMRI0c
— American Trucking (@TRUCKINGdotORG) January 15, 2020
The Trucking Cares Foundation is ATA’s charitable arm. Foundation Chairman Phil Byrd, president and CEO of Bulldog HiWay Express and former ATA chairman, emphasized the industry’s role on the matter.
“Beyond serving on the front lines, our industry can help raise awareness by recognizing those partners in government who provide the tools and resources we need to fight the good fight. The 2020 Hero Award does just that, and we thank these members of Congress for their commitment to this important cause,” said Byrd.
“From providing top-level leadership, to raising national awareness, to advancing critical legislation, their tireless efforts — combined with the efforts of the trucking industry and other [non-governmental organizations] — are what’s needed to eradicate trafficking and save countless lives from unspeakable evil,” added Sherri Garner Brumbaugh, ATA First Vice Chairman, and CEO of Garner Transportation Group.
Garner Brumbaugh was a member of the U.S. Department of Transportation Advisory Committee on Human Trafficking. Last year, the committee issued a report to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao titled, “Combating Human Trafficking in the Transportation Sector.”
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