Virginia Beach, VA – During his freshman term in Congress, Scott Taylor met with the Billie family and shortly thereafter introduced HB 5075, the Ashanti Alert Act to implement a missing adult alert with federal funding. The alert is named after Ashanti Billie, the 19-year-old college student who was abducted from JEB Little Creek. Tragically, Ashanti’s body was found days later across state lines in North Carolina. The Act was signed into law by President Trump on December 31st 2018. Effective today, Friday, July 24th 2020, states can apply for federal funding for the Ashanti Alert pilot program.
Scott Taylor commented: “This is fantastic. I will never forget the emotions on Ashanti’s parents’ faces as they stood in the House chamber looking down at the passing of the Ashanti Alert Act, one year to the day they met me in the office for help.”
Taylor continued: “However, it was not my intent when introducing this legislation for it to be a ‘pilot program.’ Rather, the Alert Act must become a ‘program,’ similar to the Amber Alert. The Ashanti Alert will save the lives of missing adults across this country, giving law enforcement a tool to shine a bigger light on them during those crucial hours after their disappearance.”
In the context of today’s current political climate, Taylor commented: “There is inequity, currently, in that minority women receive less attention when missing. This alert will help bridge that gap and save lives of countless adults. I am extremely proud of my team’s hard work in making this happen, even having to get around a certain Senator that seeks credit and obstructed the bill’s progress until he received credit. Partisan games aside, this may end up being one of the best things I have ever helped accomplish.”
Taylor added: “If I was still in Congress, this Act would be properly funded and implemented across the country as a ‘program.’ When elected, I will not rest until implementation happens nationwide.”