Trafficking Victims to Testify at Chairman Royce’s California Field Hearing on Human Trafficking

Oct 30, 2013

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, announced that two victims of human trafficking will testify at the Committee’s upcoming field hearing entitled, “Regional Perspectives in the Global Fight Against Human Trafficking.”  The hearing will begin at 10:00 a.m. PT in the Titan Student Union building on the campus of California State University, Fullerton.

The two trafficking victims, Angela Guanzon and Carissa Phelps, will provide compelling testimony about their horrific trafficking experiences, and insights into how to better prevent trafficking and protect victims.  Angela Guanzon, looking for a way to help her family in the Philippines, took an offer to come to the U.S. and work.  Once Angela arrived in the U.S., she was coerced into living and working in slave-like conditions.  Carissa Phelps ran away from home and dropped out of school by the age of 12.  Carissa was subsequently forced into sexual slavery while living on the streets in California.

Chairman Royce on the hearing: “Each year, human trafficking victimizes millions around the world; many are women and girls from our own neighborhoods.  This threat is on the rise in communities across southern California.  This field hearing will examine efforts to combat this form of modern-day slavery and provide the Committee an opportunity to assess the efforts of the State Department, law enforcement officials and community organizations to fight the spread of this grievous offense against human dignity.”

Note: Earlier this week, Chairman Royce introduced H.R. 3344, the Fraudulent Overseas Recruitment and Trafficking Elimination (FORTE) Act of 2013, legislation that combats the growing problem of international human trafficking.  This year, Chairman Royce launched a Human Trafficking Congressional Advisory Committee (HTCAC), which is comprised of victims’ rights groups, local and federal law enforcement agencies, and community advocates.  HTCAC meets on a monthly basis to address human trafficking concerns, as well as offer policy recommendations.  In May, Chairman Royce convened a Committee hearing to examine local and private sector initiatives to combat international human trafficking. 

What:

Hearing: “Regional Perspectives in the Global Fight Against Human Trafficking”

Where:

California State University, Fullerton
Titan Student Union
800 N. State College Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92834

For a campus map and parking information click HERE.

When:

Monday, November 4, 2013
10:00 a.m. PT

Witness List:

Panel I

The Honorable Luis CdeBaca
Ambassador-at-Large
Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
U.S. Department of State 

Panel II

The Honorable Tony Rackauckas
District Attorney
Office of the Orange County District Attorney

Ms. Kay Buck
Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer
Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking

Ms. Angela Guanzon
Survivor of International Trafficking
Member, CAST Survivor Advisory Caucus and National Survivor Network

Ms. Carissa Phelps
Chief Executive Officer
Runaway Girl, FPC

*Further witnesses may be added.

 ***Important planning note for press covering hearing: 

The hearing will be webcast at www.foreignaffairs.house.gov

Members of the media must RSVP by Friday, November 1 at 12 p.m. to Audra McGeorge at audra.mcgeorge@mail.house.gov to receive credentials to cover the hearing from the press viewing area.

Following the hearing, there will be a media availability to discuss human trafficking.

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