Super-important US bill about online child predators

Susan tipped me off about this. (Click on her name to read her post and be horrified):

The Combating Child Exploitation Act, which was introduced by Senator Joseph Biden, creates and implements a National Strategy for Child Exploitation Prevention and Interdiction. It designates a senior Department of Justice official to oversee the national strategy, including long-term goals, budget priorities, and program reviews to reduce the current backlog of forensic analysis for child exploitation cases.  This national strategy includes provisions to:

* establish an Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force Program consisting of state and local law enforcement officials to address the online enticement of children, child exploitation, and child obscenity and pornography;
* increase the investigative capabilities of law enforcement officers;
* provide training and technical assistance to ICAC task forces;
* increase the number of Internet crimes investigated and prosecuted;
* award grants to state and local ICAC task forces;
* and authorize funding for computer forensic capability, forensic labs, federal-state task forces, and the hiring of additional FBI agents to work solely on child exploitation cases.

Importantly, the bill expands federal authority to prosecute crimes involving child exploitation, buying or selling of children, and production or distribution of material involving the sexual exploitation of minors.

I know I live in a little protected bubble about what's going on out there, what some sick people do or try to do to kids, and who's being hurt. I never realized all the awfulness that was out there, or that there's currently no united effort to go after it.

Oprah has the information on action steps (contact your senators, of course, and tell them to "Vote yes on Senate Bill 1738—The PROTECT Our Children Act.") here.