Overview of the Administrationís Implementation of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000
Congress passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) in October 2000 to combat trafficking in persons, to ensure the just and effective punishment of traffickers and to protect victims. With this comprehensive approach to the problem, the TVPA created significant mandates for several Federal government agencies, including the Departments of State, Justice, Labor, Health and Human Services and the U.S. Agency for International Development. One of the State Departmentís responsibilities was the establishment of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which was opened in October 2001 and is now responsible for providing assistance to the Presidentís Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (Task Force). The TVPA directed the Task Force, which held its first meeting on February 13, 2002, to coordinate the Federal governmentís implementation of the TVPA. The Task Force created the Senior Policy Advisory Group, which met on March 5th, to coordinate policy and the implementation of the TVPA. Staff members from each key agency have developed the following overview of the Administrationís coordination and implementation efforts on the TVPA. Table of Contents Department of State
Congress passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) in October 2000 to combat trafficking in persons, to ensure the just and effective punishment of traffickers and to protect victims. With this comprehensive approach to the problem, the TVPA created significant mandates for several Federal government agencies, including the Departments of State, Justice, Labor, Health and Human Services and the U.S. Agency for International Development. One of the State Departmentís responsibilities was the establishment of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which was opened in October 2001 and is now responsible for providing assistance to the Presidentís Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (Task Force). The TVPA directed the Task Force, which held its first meeting on February 13, 2002, to coordinate the Federal governmentís implementation of the TVPA. The Task Force created the Senior Policy Advisory Group, which met on March 5th, to coordinate policy and the implementation of the TVPA. Staff members from each key agency have developed the following overview of the Administrationís coordination and implementation efforts on the TVPA.
Table of Contents
Department of State
Department of Justice
Department of Labor
Department of Health and Human Services
U.S. Agency for International Development
The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons and the President's Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. One of the State Departmentís responsibilities under the TVPA was the establishment of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which was opened in October 2001 and is now responsible for providing assistance to the Presidentís Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (Task Force). The TVPA directed the Task Force, which held its first meeting on February 13, 2002, to coordinate the Federal governmentís implementation of the TVPA. The Task Force created the Senior Policy Advisory Group, which met on March 5th, to coordinate policy and the implementation of the TVPA.
Trafficking in Persons Report. In July 2001, DOS published the first annual Trafficking in Persons report. The report presented information gathered from 186 embassies and consulates, as well as nongovernmental organizations and press reports. It assessed the efforts of the governments of 82 countries that were determined to have a significant number of cases of severe forms of trafficking. Following the release of the report, a number of governments listed therein took further steps to prevent trafficking, prosecute traffickers, and protect victims. The second annual Trafficking in Persons report is scheduled to be released in June 2002.
Anti-Trafficking Programs. DOS has implemented some 90 anti-trafficking programs, projects, or initiatives in over 30 countries. DOS worked closely with USAID and DOL to coordinate these programs. The anti-trafficking programs help free trafficking victims from slavery-like conditions, assist countries in the elimination of trafficking within their borders, promote regional and bilateral cooperation for trafficking eradication and support service providers and voluntary organizations in their anti-trafficking efforts internationally. The worldwide programs include centers for rehabilitation and work training, special housing shelters, law enforcement training programs, legal reform assistance, information and awareness campaigns, voluntary repatriation for displaced victims, and special training for immigration officials, medical personnel and social workers regarding the treatment of victims.
United Nations Protocol. DOS took the lead in negotiating the United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, supplementing the Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime. Currently, over 106 countries have signed the supplementary protocol; eight of which are state parties. This document provides a general framework for governments committed to addressing trafficking in the areas of prevention, prosecution of traffickers and protection of victims.
Human Rights Reports. DOS continued to expand its reporting on trafficking in persons in the 2001 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, which are produced by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. The 2001 report, which was released in February 2002, contained additional information on all forms of trafficking in persons, with an emphasis on conditions into which victims are trafficked, as well as efforts to assist victims and to protect their rights.
DOS Trafficking Brochure. DOS created an informational brochure that is targeted to potential victims entitled "Be Smart, Be Safe." It describes the tactics criminal groups use to coerce and traffic women, the risks of trafficking, what women can do to protect themselves against illegitimate groups, victimsí rights in the United States and how women can get help while in the United States. The brochure is currently available at 27 U.S. embassies in 24 different languages.
Protection and Assistance
DOJ and DOS Regulation on Protection and Assistance. DOJ and DOS jointly issued a regulation implementing section 107(c) of the TVPA, which provides authority for the INS to arrange for "continued presence" to allow trafficking victims to remain in the United States while law enforcement is investigating or prosecuting trafficking crimes. This regulation also requires DOJ and DOS to identify and appropriately address the particular needs of victims of severe forms of trafficking and provide access to information about their rights and translation services.
Training. DOS officials from various bureaus regularly brief Foreign Service Officers, including Consular Officers, and Ambassadors on trafficking in persons. This training provides them with substantive knowledge of the nature and scope of the problem; how to identify and assist victims; and how to work with host governments to improve their efforts to combat trafficking. DOS also has participated in interagency training efforts for INS adjudicators of T visas at the INS Vermont Service Center and for U.S. Attorney Victim Witness Coordinators at DOJís National Advocacy Center.
Creation of Specialized Working Groups. DOS has created specialized interagency working groups on issues that are crucial to the fight against trafficking in persons. For instance, one group is examining trafficking and public health issues such as domestic violence, alcoholism, psychological impacts, HIV/AIDS, and other sexually transmitted diseases. Another interagency working group is examining the link between trafficking in persons and peacekeeping missions, including civilian policing, military and relief workers. A working group is also exploring anecdotal information on trafficking in refugees and displaced persons in war-torn areas or regions with civil strife, where they are vulnerable to traffickers.
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (DOJ)
Prosecutions and Investigations
Increase in Number of Prosecutions and Investigations. Human trafficking cases are labor-intensive and time-consuming matters, often involving many victims and requiring the full-time involvement of multiple attorneys and investigators. Nevertheless, DOJ prosecuted 34 defendants in FY 2001, four times as many as in the year before. In addition, DOJ opened investigations into 64 allegations of trafficking in FY 2001. As of May 2002, DOJ had 111 open investigations, which represents a 50% increase over the number of open investigations the agency had a year earlier and more than a three-fold increase since establishing the Trafficking in Persons and Worker Exploitation Task Force toll-free complaint line in February 2000. Since the new statute was passed recently and its criminal law provisions do not apply retroactively, only three of DOJís recent indictments (in United States v. Kil Soo Lee, United States v. Virchenko and United States v. Sarder) included charges under the new criminal statutes. Many of the 111 investigations include allegations that may lead to indictments under the TVPA.
Creation of an Intelligence-Sharing Center. The Migrant Smuggling and Trafficking in Persons Coordination Center, which will be housed in DOJís Civil Rights Division and be opened in June 2002, will work with the State Department, Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, Coast Guard, Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and others to convert intelligence information about trafficking in persons and alien smuggling activity into more effective law enforcement.
Trafficking in Persons and Worker Exploitation Task Force. This interagency group helps coordinate the investigation and prosecution of trafficking and other exploitive work practices, and the protection of victims. The Task Force is co-chaired by the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights and the Solicitor of Labor. In 2002, DOJ will devote particular attention to developing regional task forces to investigate and prosecute trafficking cases.
Outreach. To enhance outreach efforts, Attorney General Ashcroft announced in March 2001 that there would be permanent funding of DOJís Trafficking in Persons and Worker Exploitation Task Force toll-free hotline (1-888-428-7581). He also announced the creation of a community outreach program to work with local community groups, victims' rights organizations, immigrants' rights organizations, shelters, and other interested groups.
Roundtables with NGOs and Law Enforcement Groups. In January 2002 DOJ held a roundtable meeting with approximately 35 NGOs to discuss the main tenets of the T visa regulation, and to inform them that the T visa is available for trafficking in persons victims. DOJ intends to hold future meetings with NGOs, perhaps in smaller groups, to provide an overview of DOJís efforts to combat and monitor trafficking in persons. DOJ also is planning a meeting with national law enforcement groups to present the trafficking brochures, and to discuss collaborations between DOJ and national law enforcement groups to combat trafficking.
Public Presentations on Trafficking. DOJ plans to continue and expand its public presentations on trafficking with a wide range of audiences, including annual meetings of law enforcement groups, victim service organizations, immigrant and refugee advocacy groups, public health professionals, and others. This work frequently involves participating in community-level meetings in places around the country. DOJ is also providing information on its anti-trafficking efforts to such groups for dissemination to their networks through newsletters and other publications.
Training for Federal Prosecutors and Law Enforcement. Training that DOJ has conducted thus far and will continue to build on includes: training for federal prosecutors and agents at DOJís National Advocacy Center (NAC) in South Carolina; training of federal victim-witness coordinators at the NAC; and training through the Justice Television Network, a satellite television network broadcast to U.S. Attorneysí offices and other components of DOJ. DOJ is planning another training course for Assistant U.S. Attorneys and federal agents in October 2002. DOJ plans training on various componentsí responsibilities under the 107(c) regulation (codified at 28 C.F.R. part 1100), which imposes obligations on all federal law enforcement personnel to (1) identify victims of severe forms of human trafficking; (2) protect victims in custody; and (3) provide victims with access to information and translation services.
Training for INS Personnel. In January 2002, the INS together with the Civil Rights Division and the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) conducted training at its Vermont Service Center on the adjudication of T visa applications. INS will also train new Border Patrol agents, district counsels, new attorneys and advanced attorneys, and asylum officers. INS's Office of International Affairs is creating a training film on "Trafficking of Women and Children" in coordination with the INS Training Academy. INS through both its Internet (http://www.ins.usdoj.gov/graphics/lawenfor/interiorenf/antitraf.htm) and Intranet websites provides employees and the public with information, forms, and procedural guidance related to the provisions of the TVPA.
Training and Assistance to VAWO Grantees. The technical assistance provider for each of the Violence Against Women Office (VAWO) grant programs conducts several "technical assistance institutes" annually; these institutes provide VAWO grantees and subgrantees with an opportunity to receive training and support. Throughout FY 2002, VAWO plans to use these institutes as a vehicle to provide information to its grantees about the new federal trafficking law and about resources for victims.
Training of Local Law Enforcement on Youth Exploitation. The Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section of the Criminal Division (CEOS) will collaborate with police departments and federal law enforcement to provide training on the trafficking of American youth for exploitation. For instance, CEOS will offer programs through the Dallas Childrenís Advocacy Center and Police Departmentís annual program and the Childrenís National Advocacy Center program in Huntsville, Alabama.
Development of Training Modules. CEOS and the Civil Rights Division will develop training modules to highlight the relationship between trafficking in persons cases and other types of criminal prosecutions such as organized crime, money laundering and other Criminal Division topics, as appropriate.
Overseas Activities. The FBI provides personnel overseas who work on trafficking in persons issues, notably in Romania, Albania and Bulgaria through the Southeast European Cooperative Initiative (SECI) Regional Center for Combating Transborder Crime. In addition, the Criminal Divisionís Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) works with various DOJ components and the State Department to provide expertise and assistance in training prosecutors, investigators and judges overseas to combat human trafficking.
FBIís Overseas Activities. Through SECI, the FBI works with the Department of State to create and strengthen civil structures and respect for the rule of law in southeastern Europe. The SECI Center in Bucharest, with FBI assistance, is developing a proposal for a regional agreement on witness protection. The FBI has a Special Agent in Romania who works with the Romanian government on an anti-trafficking task force, which has taken down four significant trafficking organizations. As it has gained greater expertise in combating trafficking in persons, the FBI has redirected its resources from the SECI Center to the field, with special agents also assigned to Tirana, Albania and Sofia, Bulgaria.
OPDATís Overseas Activities. OPDAT will provide technical assistance programs to establish anti-trafficking in persons task forces in Bulgaria, Romania, Bosnia, Albania, and Kosovo. In January and February 2002, OPDAT conducted an assessment of trafficking in persons in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan; based on that assessment, OPDAT will provide a series of regional anti-trafficking seminars in five Central Asian republics. Also in January and February 2002, OPDAT presented a series of anti-trafficking roundtables in Yerevan, Armenia, and provided assistance to an already established anti-trafficking working group in Chisinau, Moldova. In Asia and the Pacific, OPDAT will coordinate two programs on child exploitation, a regional one to be held in India in March 2002, and one in Sri Lanka in May 2002.
Criminal Division/CEOS and Civil Rights Division/Criminal Sectionís Overseas Activities. In December 2001 the Criminal Division led an eight-person U.S. delegation to the Second World Congress on Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children (CSEC). As an international leader against CSEC, the U.S. delegation participated in workshops and meetings with representatives of other countries on strategies to address law enforcement, prosecution, and victim services aspects. The United States also negotiated changes in the commitment statement, which was adopted by consensus. The delegation is planning follow-up briefings for U.S. Government personnel and NGOs.
The Civil Rights Divisionís Criminal Section has worked closely with OPDAT to provide expertise and assistance in training prosecutors, police, and judges overseas to combat human trafficking in those countries and regions. Criminal Section attorneys have participated in assistance and training in Poland, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Macedonia, Romania, Greece, Thailand, and former Soviet republics including Ukraine, Kazakstan, Uzbekistan and Krygyzstan. In addition, Criminal Section attorneys have briefed many international visitors to the United States on the TVPA.
CEOS and the Criminal Section plan to continue to provide training to foreign police and prosecutors in programs funded by the Department of State through OPDAT. Programs conducted by CEOS and the Criminal Section stress the need for legal reforms that ensure adequate punishment of traffickers and protection of victims, the benefits of a multiagency approach to trafficking in persons, and outreach to NGOs.
INSís Activities in Bangkok and Sarajevo. The INS Bangkok office will continue to work jointly with NGOs and the Thai government to identify, deter, and disrupt trafficking organizations and assist victims, particularly children. Plans are underway to host a workshop in 2002 on trafficking at the International Law Enforcement Academy. The Department of State will provide funding for this effort. The INS Overseas Enforcement Branch established and continue to work on a human trafficking taskforce in Sarajevo in concert with SECI in Romania.
Research that is Ongoing or Near Completion. The National Institute of Justice (NIJ), the research and development arm of DOJ, has provided grants to study the following substantive areas related to trafficking in persons: 1) the commercial sexual exploitation of children in the United States, Mexico and Canada; 2) sex trafficking of women in three regional U.S. cities and the links between international and domestic sex industries (which follows the path of a trafficked woman from her point of entrance into a U.S. sex industry to her current status); 3) trafficking in women from Ukraine (this study will also create a database containing victim profiles of women and children who have been trafficked from Ukraine to various destinations throughout the world, including the former Soviet Republics); 4) trafficking in persons in the United States; and 5) a study of victim service providers that will provide three "snapshots" of how victim services agencies are coping with demands that may be placed on them by the special needs of trafficking victims. NIJ is also hosting a visiting scholar from Rutgers University who is conducting research that focuses on three particular dimensions of trafficking: the profitability of the trafficking business, the organization and structure of the criminal groups involved, and the process or modus operandi of trafficking.
Working with Congress. The Criminal Division recently drafted an overhaul of the federal sex tourism statute so that it is substantially broader than the current version. This has now been vetted through DOJ and the Office of Management and Budget and is now Administration policy. DOJ is seeking sponsors in Congress. DOJ amendments will allow federal prosecutors to prosecute any American who goes abroad and engages in statutory rape or sexual abuse of a child, or who pays a minor to engage in sex. Also, anyone who attempts such acts can be punished, which will enhance DOJís ability to conduct undercover operations against these type of offenders. In addition, the proposed amendments will enable DOJ to prosecute sex tour operators more easily, if they do anything for the purpose of facilitating child prostitution or sex abuse.
Protection and Assistance
Issuance of the T Nonimmigrant Status ("T visa") Regulation. T nonimmigrant status was created as part of the TVPA. This interim regulation addresses the essential elements that must be demonstrated for a victim of a severe form of trafficking in persons to be eligible for classification as a T nonimmigrant alien, the procedures to be followed by applicants, and evidentiary guidance to assist in the application process. The interim regulation went into effect on March 4, 2002. Five thousand T visas will be available annually. See 67 Fed. Reg. 4783 (January 31, 2002). The INS, which has centralized processing of T visa applications at the INSí Vermont Service Center, has received T visa applications and will begin issuing T visas in the near future.
Issuance of the U Nonimmigrant Status Regulation. DOJ will issue a proposed rule on the U nonimmigrant status in 2002. The U nonimmigrant status was passed as part of the Violence Against Women Act of 2000 and is intended to provide temporary status for individuals who are not U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents but who are victims of specific violent crimes such as trafficking, rape or sexual assault committed against them while in the United States. To be eligible, applicants must have a certification from a specified government agency about their helpfulness to the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity. Ten thousand visas will be available annually.
Issuance of a Regulation Providing for the Protection and Assistance of Victims of Severe Forms of Trafficking in Persons. The Departments of Justice and State issued a regulation implementing section 107(c) of the TVPA, which provides authority for the INS to arrange for "continued presence" to allow trafficking victims to remain in the United States while law enforcement is investigating or prosecuting trafficking crimes. This regulation also requires Justice and State to identify and appropriately address the particular needs of victims of severe forms of trafficking and provide access to information about their rights and translation services. See 66 Fed. Reg. 38514 (July 24, 2001).
$10 Million for Grants. The Commerce-Justice-State Appropriations Act for FY 2002 appropriates $10 million to fund a grant program established by the TVPA. The TVPA provides that the Attorney General may use these funds to make grants to states, Indian tribes, units of local government, and nonprofit, NGO victim service organizations to develop, expand, or strengthen victim service programs for victims of trafficking. OVC is managing this program and expects to issue application guidance in the near future.
Release of Interagency Trafficking in Persons Brochures. DOJ has collaborated with the Departments of State, Health and Human Services and Labor to develop two brochures on trafficking in persons, one for law enforcement to provide to trafficking victims and the other for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to use as a reference guide to help trafficking victims. Brochures are being distributed to constituent groups, such as victim-witness specialists, investigators and prosecutors in the field, immigrantsí groups, law enforcement organizations, victimsí groups, NGOs that combat domestic violence, and battered womenís shelters. Brochures are posted on DOJ and other agenciesí websites.
Clinical Victim Specialist. OVC has transferred first-year funding for a clinical victim specialist to work with trafficking in persons victims as part of the Civil Rights Divisionís prosecution team.
Working with Congress. The INSí Vermont Service Center will be responsible for tracking the annual issuance of approvals for T nonimmigrant status. Systems are being developed to track the number of T status grants and the number that will be placed on the waiting list if the 5,000 cap is reached.
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR (DOL)
Cooperative agreement with the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX). DOLís Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) has negotiated a $1.2 million cooperative agreement with the IREX, a nongovernmental organization, to conduct a two-year anti-trafficking project in Eastern Europe. Started in November 2001, this program aims to prevent the trafficking of women by creating viable economic alternatives for at-risk women in seven major cities.
Projects with the International Program on the Elimination of Child Labor. ILAB has supported projects through the International Labor Organizationís International Program on the Elimination of Child Labor (ILO-IPEC) to address child trafficking in 17 countries in West and Central Africa, Southeast Asia, South Asia and South America. These projects rescue children from trafficking and exploitative work situations and provide them with rehabilitation services and educational opportunities. They also undertake efforts to prevent children from being trafficked in the first place.
Office of Foreign Relations International Technical Assistance. ILABís numerous technical assistance projects under the program objectives ĎImproving Economic Opportunities and Social Safety Netsí and in ĎProtecting the Basic Rights of Workersí combat trafficking in persons. Projects under ĎImproving Economic Opportunities and Social Safety Netsí promote workforce development and employment creation, strengthen unemployment insurance and pension systems, develop reliable labor market information systems, and improve workplace safety and health. Under the program objective ĎProtecting the Basic Rights of Workersí the OFR and ILO work with developing countries to establish basic labor protections so that workers everywhere can enjoy the fundamental principles and rights at work, including those standards most relevant to trafficking: ending child labor, forced labor, and discrimination.
Prosecutions and Investigations
Coordination with the Department of Justice. The Solicitor of Labor and Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights co-chair the Trafficking in Persons and Worker Exploitation Task Force through which the two agencies coordinate on investigations of egregious workplace conditions.
Recent Cases. DOLís Wage and Hour Division and the Solicitorís Office have assisted DOJís ongoing prosecution of the owner of a garment sweatshop in American Samoa, the first criminal prosecution under the TVPA. Other recent cases in which DOL played a significant role include a 1999 case where three defendants were convicted of slavery and immigration violations arising from their use of threats of force to enslave Mexican farm workers in the agricultural fields of southern Florida. In 2000, the Federal government obtained convictions against four garment shop owners in Manhattanís Chinatown for lying to Wage and Hour investigators. Also in 2000, two garment companies based in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands were ordered to each pay a fine of $100,000 and to serve five years probation after pleading guilty to criminal contempt charges for violating a consent judgment that ordered them to pay legally-required wages to their employees. In the last several years, four notorious farm labor contractors in the Southeastern United States who exploited farm workers were convicted under various criminal provisions. Most recently, in 2001, a Florida farm labor contractor was sentenced to four years in prison after pleading guilty to charges that he used insurmountable debts for cocaine, beer and cigarettes, as well as threats and violence, to enslave field workers.
Protection and Assistance
Directive to Field Offices on Victim Services. DOLís Employment and Training Administration (ETA) sent a Directive to its field offices outlining the provisions of the TVPA allowing victims to receive job-training and other services without regard to their immigration status. The services provided at ETA One-Stop Career Centers, such as job search assistance, career counseling and occupational skills training, may be of significant value to trafficking victims.
Interagency Cooperation on Trafficking Brochure. DOLís Womenís Bureau participated in the interagency effort to prepare the brochure entitled "Trafficking in Persons: A Guide for Nongovernmental Organizations."
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (HHS)
Interagency Cooperation on Trafficking Brochure. The HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) participated in the interagency effort to prepare the brochure entitled "Trafficking in Persons: A Guide for Nongovernmental Organizations."
Outreach Efforts. ORR staff members have facilitated training and given presentations in a variety of organized forums, reaching out to approximately 2,000 people since March 2001. These sessions focused on the problem of trafficking, background of the legislation, the roles and responsibilities of HHS within the law, the role of benefit-issuing offices in the HHS certification process and the benefits and services available to certified/eligible trafficking victims.
Protection and Assistance
Certification Process Developed. The TVPA makes adult victims of severe forms of trafficking who have been certified by HHS eligible for certain benefits and services to the same extent as refugees. Victims who are under 18 years of age are also eligible for certain benefits but do not need to be certified. In May 2001, ORR issued guidance to benefit-granting agencies State Refugee Coordinators and NGOs explaining the requirements for certification and the documentation and eligibility procedures. ORR issued additional guidance to benefit-granting agencies, State Refugee Coordinators and NGOs in January 2002.
Certification and Eligibility Letters Issued. Since the passage of the TVPA, ORR has issued 232 certification letters to adults and 14 eligibility letters to minors under the age of 18. Of those victims issued certification and eligibility letters, 91 applied for assistance in 2001.
Discretionary Grants. In 2001, ORR awarded over $1.25 million to eight organizations throughout the United States. The purpose of the grants is to provide nongovernmental groups the resources to assist trafficking victims in their transition from victimization to self-sufficiency. Grant funds may be used for a wide range of services, including case management, temporary housing, special mental health needs, such as trauma counseling, legal assistance referrals and cultural orientation.
Coordination with the Department of Justice. ORR has worked closely with the Criminal Section of the Civil Rights Division and the INS at DOJ to issue certification and eligibility letters for victims. In addition, ORR has worked closely with U.S. Attorneys throughout the U.S. as well as other law enforcement officials.
Prevention and Protection
Overall Funding. In 2001, USAID obligated more than $6 million for direct anti-trafficking activities in 24 countries, all of which appeared on the 2001 Trafficking in Persons Report by the State Department. USAID work s toward prevention of trafficking primarily through lessening the vulnerability of women and children to trafficking, protecting and assisting the victims of traffickers, and supporting legislative reform and implementation to help countries meet minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, with special emphasis on countries that have significant levels of severe forms of trafficking.
Africa. In Angola, a partnership with a local nongovernmental organization provides basic literacy and vocational training and rehabilitation to abused women and war wives (including both former combatants and trafficked women.) In Liberia, USAID supports a similar program. Small grants from USAID help the International Federation of Women Lawyers to work in Nigeria with other nongovernmental organizations to encourage local governments to address trafficking issues. Working with the international cocoa and chocolate industry, USAID is mobilizing support for anti-trafficking activities in Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Cameroon and Guinea through its Sustainable Tree Crops Program (STCP). This program directly addresses forced child trafficking and labor in West Africaís tree crop industry.
Asia. USAID funds a large regional anti-trafficking effort for South Asia, managed by the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). This program focuses on prevention and education in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The USAID-UNIFEM partnership supports networking and alliance-building among nongovernmental community leaders and the law enforcement community. USAID/Indiaís anti-trafficking activities, in collaboration with UNIFEM, include grant support to policy planning processes within government agencies to implement the National Plan of Action, capacity building of nongovernmental organizations (especially in legal skills), rehabilitation of children of sex workers through education, and piloting of community-based actions to combat trafficking. USAID/Nepal supports prevention and protection, focusing primarily on raising awareness, gathering information, promoting advocacy, and providing assistance to victims. These activities are closely coordinated with the Nepalese Governmentís national plan of action against trafficking. Anti-trafficking work of USAID in Bagladesh includes targeted research, strengthening anti-trafficking networks, supporting NGO capacity building, prosecution of traffickers, protection of victims and targeted prevention efforts. In Central Asia, USAID anti-trafficking activities increase public awareness and services to victims. Through the International Organization for Migration, USAID supports a multi-faceted anti-trafficking approach, bringing together government, civil society, businesses and law enforcement to raise awareness, educate potential victims and implement preventive action plans.
Central Europe and the Former Soviet Union. USAID/Russia has developed creative information and education campaigns coordinated with an on-going program to report and prevent domestic violence and provide support to womenís crisis centers around the country. USAID/Ukraineís Trafficking Prevention Program, launched in 1998, has helped to establish seven regional centers that now offer job skills training, hot lines, crisis prevention, legal, psychosocial and medical referral services for vulnerable women. More than 30,000 women have already used the hotlines. USAID also funded a docudrama, If I Donít Return, exposing the dangers of trafficking. The film was aired on national television in the fall of 2001 and will be re-broadcast on many local television stations. In Central Europe, USAID is helping to assess the extent of trafficking, particularly in the Balkans, and is working closely with other donors to support womenís shelters, to facilitate repatriation and to promote regional forums on trafficking.
Latin America and the Caribbean. USAID provided support to the Organization of American States (OAS) in partnership with the International Human Rights Law Institute of DePaul University College of Law, to conduct a study on the trafficking of women and children for sexual exploitation in the Americas. The project aims to arrive at concrete recommendations for action at the domestic, regional and international levels to help address this issue.
USAID in Washington. USAIDís Office of Women in Development coordinates the Agencyís anti-trafficking efforts and plays an active role within the U.S. interagency mechanisms. All USAID regional bureaus are supporting efforts to combat trafficking in their regions.