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Schatz Legislation To Combat Child Sexual Exploitation Expected To Be Signed Into Law

New Law Will Crack Down On Trafficking Of Child Pornography On Defense Department Network; Report Found Child Pornography Activity From More Than 5,000 Individuals Affiliated with DoD

WASHINGTON – The End National Defense (END) Network Abuse Act, authored by U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawai‘i), was included in the annual must-pass National Defense Authorization Act and is expected to be signed into law. The END Network Abuse Act will help the Pentagon stop the unacceptable use of the Defense Department’s (DoD) network to view, possess, trade, procure, and even produce child pornography.

“This law will give our military leaders the tools they need to get rid of child pornography on DoD’s network, go after offenders, and protect innocent and vulnerable children,” said Senator Schatz.

Across the internet, more than 45 million online images and videos of child sexual abuse material were reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. 

In 2018, the DoD’s network ranked 19th out of 2,891 networks nationwide when it came to peer-to-peer file trading of child pornography. Coupled with these troubling statistics is a lack of training and law enforcement tools for the DoD to take on child sexual exploitation.

The END Network Abuse Act would upgrade the training and technical capacity of military criminal investigative organizations to confront the misuse of the DoD’s computers, facilities, and equipment to access and trade child pornography. It would also require the DoD to enter into collaborative agreements with appropriate federal, state and local law enforcement entities, child protection organizations, trauma informed health care providers, and targeted social services.

The END Network Abuse Act is supported by a number of organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), Association of Prosecuting Attorneys (APA), International Association of Directors of Law Enforcement Standards and Training (IADLEST), National Children’s Advocacy Center, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), National Children’s Alliance (NCA), National Criminal Justice Training Center (NCJTC),  National District Attorneys Association (NDAA), Safe States Alliance, Thorn, National Association to Protect Children (PROTECT), American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children, Rights4Girls, National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE).

For a summary of the END Network Abuse Act, click here.