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Trafficking in Persons U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress, December 23, 2010

Trafficking in Persons U.S. Policy and Issues for Congress, December 23, 2010

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Published by Chuck Achberger

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Published by: Chuck Achberger on Apr 29, 2011
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CRS Report for Congress
Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issuesfor Congress
Alison Siskin
Specialist in Immigration Policy
Liana Sun Wyler
Analyst in International Crime and NarcoticsDecember 23, 2010
Congressional Research Service
7-5700www.crs.govRL34317
 
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for CongressCongressional Research Service
Summary
Trafficking in persons (TIP) for the purposes of exploitation is believed to be one of the mostprolific areas of international criminal activity and is of significant concern to the United Statesand the international community. According to Department of State estimates, roughly 800,000people are trafficked across borders each year. If trafficking within countries is included in thetotal world figures, official U.S. estimates indicate that some 2 to 4 million people are traffickedannually. As many as 17,500 people are believed to be trafficked into the United States each yearand some have estimated that 100,000 U.S. citizen (USC) children are victims of traffickingwithin the United States..Since enactment of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA, P.L.106-386), the Administration and Congress have aimed to address TIP by authorizing newprograms and reauthorizing existing ones, appropriating funds, creating new criminal laws, andconducting oversight on the effectiveness and implications of U.S. anti-TIP policy. Most recently,the TVPA was reauthorized through FY2011 in the William Wilberforce Trafficking VictimsProtection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-457). Obligations for global and domestic anti-TIP programs, not including operations and law enforcement investigations, totaledapproximately $103.5 million in FY2009.Activity on combating TIP may continue into the 112
th
Congress, particularly related to efforts toreauthorize the TVPA. Ongoing international policy issues include how to measure theeffectiveness of the U.S. and international responses to TIP, including the State Department’sannual TIP rankings and the use of unilateral sanctions; and how to prevent known sex offendersfrom engaging in child sex tourism. Domestic issues that may arise include whether there is equaltreatment of all victims—both foreign nationals and U.S. citizens, as well as victims of labor andsex trafficking; and whether current law and services are adequate to deal with the emerging issueof domestic minor sex trafficking (i.e., the prostitution of children in the United States). Otherissues are whether to include all forms of prostitution (i.e., children and adults) in the definitionof TIP, and whether sufficient efforts are applied to addressing all forms of TIP, including notonly sexual exploitation, but also forced labor and child soldiers.On June 14, 2010, the State Department issued its 10
th
annual, congressionally mandated reporton human trafficking. In addition to outlining major trends and ongoing challenges in combatingTIP, the report provides a country-by-country analysis and ranking, based on what progressforeign countries have made in their efforts to prosecute traffickers, protect victims, and preventTIP. For the first time, the United States was included as one of the ranked countries. The reportcategorizes countries into four tiers according to the government’s efforts to combat trafficking.Those countries that do not cooperate in the fight against trafficking (Tier 3) may be subject toU.S. foreign assistance sanctions. On September 13, 2010, President Barack Obama determinedthat two Tier 3 countries will be sanctioned for FY2011 without exemption (Eritrea and NorthKorea). In addition, he determined that four Tier 3 countries will be partially sanctioned (Burma,Cuba, Iran, and Zimbabwe).The 2010 TIP report also included for the first time, a list of six countries that recruit, use, orharbor child soldiers. Inclusion on this list subjects these countries to possible U.S. assistancesanctions.
 
Trafficking in Persons: U.S. Policy and Issues for CongressCongressional Research Service
Contents
Background................................................................................................................................1
 
Definitions............................................................................................................................1
 
Scope of the Problem............................................................................................................2
 
Continuing Challenges in Combating TIP..............................................................................4
 
Traffickers and Their Victims................................................................................................5
 
U.S. Funding for Global Anti-Trafficking Programs....................................................................6
 
The 2010 TIP Report.................................................................................................................10
 
2010 Country Rankings.......................................................................................................11
 
2010 TIP Sanctions.............................................................................................................15
 
List of Countries Involved in Recruiting and Using Child Soldiers......................................15
 
Other Recent Reports to Congress on International TIP Issues.............................................16
 
The International Response.......................................................................................................17
 
U.N. Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish TIP............................................................17
 
Other Relevant International Agreements............................................................................18
 
U.N. and Related Agencies’ Anti-Trafficking Programs.......................................................18
 
Other Regional Organizations and International Forums......................................................19
 
European Union............................................................................................................19
 
Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).......................................20
 
Trafficking in the United States.................................................................................................20
 
Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking.........................................................................................21
 
Official Estimates of Human Trafficking in the United States..............................................21
 
Estimates Into the United States....................................................................................22
 
Estimate of Domestic Minor Sex Trafficking (DMST)...................................................23
 
Response to Trafficking within the United States.......................................................................24
 
Immigration Relief for Trafficking Victims..........................................................................24
 
T Nonimmigrant Status.................................................................................................24
 
Continued Presence.......................................................................................................28
 
U Nonimmigrant Status.................................................................................................29
 
Aid Available to Victims of Trafficking in the United States................................................30
 
Health and Human Services Grants...............................................................................32
 
Department of Justice, Office for Victims of Crime.......................................................34
 
Department of Labor.....................................................................................................34
 
Domestic Investigations of Trafficking Offenses.................................................................34
 
Human Smuggling and Trafficking Center....................................................................35
 
Policy Issues.............................................................................................................................36
 
Credibility of TIP Rankings.................................................................................................36
 
Sanctions: A Useful Tool?...................................................................................................37
 
Equal Focus on all Types of Trafficking?.............................................................................37
 
Forced Labor: A Growing TIP Problem?..............................................................................37
 
Debates Regarding Prostitution and Sex Trafficking............................................................38
 
Distinctions Between Trafficking and Alien Smuggling.......................................................38
 
How to Measure the Effectiveness of Global Anti-TIP Programs.........................................39
 
Issues Concerning Immigration Relief for Trafficking Victims............................................40
 
Stringency of T Determination......................................................................................40
 
Tool of Law Enforcement or Aid to Victims..................................................................41
 

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