Obama Administration to Combat Human Trafficking
Established in March 2012, the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (PITF) actively works to alleviate impacts and rates of human trafficking on both domestic and international levels. Initiatives to increase adherence to the rule of law, victim service provisions, analysis of supply and procurement chains and public awareness are central to the mission of the task force.

The task force aims to put an end to human trafficking through coordinated efforts among leaders across the board in dimensions such as academics, religious communities, the private sector and survivors of modern slavery.

In his last address to the PITF during Obama’s administration, Secretary Kerry emphasized the depth of destruction caused by human trafficking’s impact on “every single thing we are trying to accomplish in the field of development.” Kerry also condemned the “multi-billion-dollar criminal enterprise” that is human trafficking, while emphasizing the necessity of mobilizing resources to combat illicit activity.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) resumes responsibility for another anti-human trafficking initiative called the Blue Campaign created during the Obama administration. It acts as a conduit for collaboration between law enforcement, government, non-governmental and private organizations to enhance public awareness and unify investigative efforts.

Created in 2012, the public-private partnership called the Partnership for Freedom is another program developed during the Obama administration. This initiative offers financial support for innovative victim services as well as grants for tech communities to hinder illicit activity.

When the U.S. Advisory Council on Human Trafficking was created in 2015, its establishment emboldened invaluable expertise that human trafficking survivors had attained through their experiences. Composed of 11 survivors, these individuals lend policy advice to the PITF, integrating diversity and personal expertise to the future of anti-human trafficking efforts.

Amber Bailey

Photo: Flickr