RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares has joined a group of 41 attorneys general in sending a letter urging a federal agency to help human trafficking victims.

The letter was sent to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in support of the “intent of the Debt Bondage Repair Act in the agency’s rulemaking.”

The letter says the CFPB could help human trafficking survivors establish financial independence. Often, the survivors will not have financial independence or stability because those who traffick them take those rights away.

“Even after they escape their trafficking, these survivors are often left with a wrecked credit history that leaves them unable to rent an apartment, purchase a car, or find employment,” Miyares’ office wrote in a news release.

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The Debt Bondage Repair Act was signed into law in December and prevents credit agencies from releasing consumer reports that have negative information about human trafficking survivors that stems from periods in which they were being trafficked.

“Human trafficking is a heinous, multigenerational crime that continues to affect survivors after they’ve escaped their trafficker. One-way traffickers trap their victims is by destroying their credit history, making it nearly impossible for victims to live independently. Rebuilding credit history and establishing financial stability is key to helping survivors reenter society and rebuild their lives. I’m proud to encourage the CFPB to support victims of human trafficking and help end the cycle of abuse,” Miyares said.

“It is absolutely vital to recognize traffickers not only control the physical lives of their victims but anything they can benefit from without any thought regarding the person’s future. Traffickers use every relevant vulnerability to exploit victims. Fair economic empowerment for survivors of trafficking is key to helping them transition into society” said Tanya Gould, Director of the Anti-Human Trafficking division of the Virginia Attorney General’s Office.

Read the letter from the attorneys general here.