H.R. 1511: Torture Victims Relief Reauthorization Act of 2009

H.R. 1511

Torture Victims Relief Reauthorization Act of 2009

Date
June 23, 2009 (111th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

H.R. 1511 is being considered under suspension of the rules, requiring a two-thirds vote for passage. The legislation was introduced by Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) on March 16, 2009.

Bill Summary

H.R. 1511 authorizes $49 million for Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011 for domestic, international, and United Nations programs that help treat victims of torture.

Specifically, the bill authorizes $25 million for Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011, for the Department of Health and Human Services to support domestic programs that help victims of torture, including physical and psychological rehabilitation and legal assistance. Additionally, $12 million for Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011, is authorized for international programs that help to rehabilitate individual victims of torture and for professionals and organizations that treat torture victims, their families and their communities. Finally, H.R. 1511 authorizes $12 million for Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011 for a contribution to the United Nations Fund for Victims of Torture.

 

Background

Torture victims relief programs were last authorized by Congress in 2003. The programs provide grants to domestic programs that cover the costs of the rehabilitation of victims of torture, grants to torture treatment centers in foreign countries, and contributions to the United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture.

The United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture was established in 1981 to receive voluntary contributions from governments, non-governmental organizations and individuals for distribution to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) providing humanitarian assistance to victims of torture and their family. The Fund is administered by the Secretary General who is advised by a Board of Trustees.

 

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has not yet produced a cost estimate for H.R. 1511.