Senator Cortese’s Bill to Combat Online Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking Moves Forward

Senator Dave Cortese (D-Silicon Valley) made the following statement regarding his bill SB 435, The Ending Online Sexual Trafficking and Exploitation Act, passing through the Senate Judiciary Committee on January 12th.

SB 435 which is meant to “put an end to human trafficking in the digital age” is sponsored by the California Women’s Law Center and supported by a broad coalition of advocates for ending sexual assault and exploitation including the Audrie Pott Foundation, the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, Democratic Activists for Women, the Enough Is Enough Voter Project, Equality Now, Feminist Majority, the Santa Clara County Democratic Party, the Silicon Valley Democratic Club, and Women’s March San Jose.

“The coalition behind SB 435 is committed to empowering victims of ‘digital trafficking’ and ending online sexual exploitation as swiftly as possible. I’m appreciative of my colleagues for listening to survivors of this type of online abuse and for advancing this important measure.”

“I want to be very clear – this bill only seeks to eliminate the circulation of online content of a sexual nature that is shared, distributed, or uploaded against a person’s will as well as the sharing of child sexual abuse material online. Victims of this form of exploitation deserve some form of recourse and our civil code, as it stands, simply doesn’t afford them that. SB 435 is a first-in-the-nation bill to end the trafficking of nonconsensual digital sexual material that has become increasingly pervasive nationwide.”