When I learned yesterday that the Governor signed into law anti-Human Trafficking legislation I naturally expected that Van Tran, had supported the bill when it passed through the State Assembly. I should have known better. Van Tran Missed the Vote. When his vote mattered on important legislation to fight Human Trafficking and Slavery, he had other things to do that were more important to him. Van Tran missed voting on SB 657, first on June 29th when it came before the Assembly Judiciary Committee, and again on August 26th, on the Assembly Floor.
From Senate President pro Tem Steinberg:
SACRAMENTO Consumers, investors, and businesses will now be able to use their purchasing power to help combat slavery and human trafficking under legislation authored by Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) and signed into law today by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.Â SB 657, the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010, beginning in 2012, requires large retailers and manufacturers with more than $100 million in annual gross receipts doing business in California to tell consumers on their websites what steps, if any, they take to ensure their product supply chains are free of slavery and trafficking.
â€œWith better transparency Californians can now ensure they do not promote and sanction these heinous crimes through the purchase of everyday items that have tainted supply chains,â€Steinberg said.Â â€œThis is a simple measure that has the potential to change behavior in a way that will save lives and encourage humane working conditions not just here in California but throughout the world.â€Â
The legislation, which is supported by a broad coalition of human rights organizations, anti-trafficking/slavery groups, labor, consumer groups, law enforcement, and socially responsible investing firms, asks big companies to tell us:
- If they evaluate product supply chains for risks of slavery and trafficking.
- If they conduct audits of suppliers.
- If they have internal accountability for employees and contractors failing to meet company standards.
- If they provide employees and management with responsibility for supply chains training on slavery and trafficking.
Today, 12.3 million people work in some form of forced labor worldwide.Â Of those, nearly 2.5 million people are estimated to have been trafficked.Â California is among the top destinations for traffickers and forced labor in the United States.Â Over 500 victims from 18 countries were identified in California between 1998 and 2003.Â Many more go unnoticed.
So not only does Van Tran not live in the district he represents in the State Assembly, he doesn’t show up to vote on something this important.
“While Van Tran was avoiding votes on an important anti-trafficking bill, Congresswoman Sanchez was introducing tough new legislation to combat child trafficking and exploitation in the U.S. and abroad,” said Jessica Mejia, the campaign manager for the Committee to Re-Elect Loretta Sanchez. “Our opponent can talk about human rights all he wants, but his paltry record on this issue speaks for itself. Rep. Sanchez has spent the last fourteen years supporting legislation to promote human rights, as well as strengthen education, cut taxes for the middle class, and increase lending to small businesses – issues that are particularly important to her Vietnamese constituents.”
I have to wonder ifÂ his supporters are trying to Send Van Tran to Washington, D.C. toÂ NOT VOTE ON IMPORTANT LEGISLATION?