For 20 years, the Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP Report) has demonstrated the United States’ conviction that human trafficking is a global threat necessitating a global response. Traffickers are denying nearly 25 million people their fundamental right to freedom, forcing them to live enslaved and toil for their exploiter’s profit. This report arms governments with the data they need to increase the prosecution of traffickers, provide victim-centered and trauma-informed protection for victims of trafficking, and prevent this crime altogether.
This year, the TIP Report introduction highlights human trafficking that takes place exclusively within the borders of one country, absent any transnational elements. Although acknowledging human trafficking in this form is not new or novel, it remains important. The ILO reports that, globally, traffickers exploit 77 percent of victims in their countries of residence. Far too often, individuals, organizations, and governments erroneously use definitions of trafficking in persons that require the movement of victims.
This year’s report focuses on effective ways local communities can address human trafficking proactively and on how national governments can support and empower them. Local communities are the most affected by this abhorrent crime and are also the first line of defense against human trafficking. By engaging and training law enforcement, religious leaders, teachers, tribal elders, business executives, and communities, we become more vigilant and learn to identify and address vulnerabilities swiftly. Proactive community-driven measures strengthen our ability to protect our most vulnerable and weaken a criminal’s ability to infiltrate, recruit, and exploit.
In particular, the introduction of this year’s Report focuses on the responsibility of governments to criminalize human trafficking and hold offenders accountable. To that end, this Report is intended to assist governments in identifying threats so law enforcement agencies around the world can respond effectively and gain insight into where human trafficking remains most severe. The Report will also equip local and sub-national law enforcement agencies to better assist in efforts to target and prosecute those who commit these terrible crimes.
Watch video of the announcement ceremony HERE
This year’s Report underscores the need for increased attention to preventing human trafficking. It encourages governments to identify and acknowledge those most at-risk in society, and to create effective ways to recognize vulnerable populations and help first responders spot the methods used by human traffickers. By understanding the needs of vulnerable groups, governments can partner with NGOs and the private sector to protect the innocent from would-be traffickers.
This year’s Report places a special emphasis on human traf cking in the global marketplace. It highlights the hidden risks that workers may encounter when seeking employment and the steps that governments and businesses can take to prevent trafficking, including a demand for transparency in global supply chains.
This year’s Trafficking in Persons Report offers a roadmap for the road ahead as we confront the scourge of trafficking. Whether a concerned citizen, a board member, a government official, or a survivor of trafficking, we each have a responsibility to spot human trafficking, engage our communities, and commit to take action.
Focuses on the importance of effective victim identification, and on those approaches and policies that have succeeded in bringing victims out of the darkness of exploitation. The Report outlines specific steps officials should take—from legislators and judges to police officers and border guards—to make sure the victims of this crime don’t go unrecognized. And it illustrates why identifying victims by itself is not enough—they need to be given a true voice in the process.
Watch the video of the announcement ceremony HERE.