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     Human Trafficking - Services for Survivors

The Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000 is the first comprehensive federal law to address trafficking in persons. The law provides a three-pronged approach that includes prevention, protection, and prosecution. The TVPA was reauthorized through the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA) of 2003, 2005, 2008, 2013, and 2015.

Under U.S. federal law, "severe forms of trafficking in persons" includes both sex trafficking and labor trafficking:

  • Sex Trafficking is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, obtaining, patronizing, or soliciting of a person for the purposes of a commercial sex act, in which the commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act has not attained 18 years of age (22 USC § 7102).

  • Labor Trafficking is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purposes of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery, (22 USC § 7102).

During 2017, more than 8,500 cases of potential human trafficking were reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline, a resource supported by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Approximately 71% were cases of sex trafficking and 15% were cases of labor trafficking with minors accounting for approximately 29% of all trafficking cases reported to the hotline.

The Department of Justice's anti-trafficking efforts involve numerous components engaged in investigating and prosecuting human trafficking crimes, stabilizing and supporting trafficking victims, and expanding outreach and training.  The Office of Justice Programs' Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) funds the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Program to help state and local law enforcement agencies develop an effective response to technology-facilitated child sexual exploitation and Internet crimes against children.  OJJDP implements a number of training and capacity-building initiatives related to responding to and addressing the commercial sexual exploitation of children.  OJP's Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) helps victims find local programs, helplines, compensation programs and more. OVC provides resources for U.S. citizens both inside the U.S. and abroad as well as international victims. One such resource is a searchable database that allows victims to search by type of crime, such as human trafficking.

See these human trafficking survivor resources:

Services and Task Forces MapAccess to Victim Services

The OVC Human Trafficking site provides access to a searchable matrix of services for trafficking victims — including outreach, legal/court advocacy, specialized, mental health, emergency shelter and intensive case management — from organizations that are funded by OVC and Bureau of Justice Assistance grants. Also see the Services and Task Forces Map for easy access to this program information.

Additional Resources for Help

Following are examples of websites that provide information and resources on human trafficking: