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  5. Blue Lightning Initiative

Blue Lightning Initiative

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Blue Lightning Initiative: End Human Trafficking

The Blue Lightning Initiative (BLI) is an element of the DHS Blue Campaign, led by the Department of Transportation (DOT) and DHS Component Agency, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). The BLI trains aviation personnel to identify potential traffickers and human trafficking victims, and to report their suspicions to federal law enforcement. To date, more than 200,000 personnel in the aviation industry have been trained through the BLI, and actionable tips continue to be reported to law enforcement.

The “FAA Extension, Safety, and Security Act of 2016,” signed by the President on July 15, 2016, requires air carriers to provide initial and annual flight attendant training regarding recognizing and responding to potential human trafficking victims. The "FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018", signed by the President on October 5, 2018, expands the requirement to include “ticket counter agents, gate agents, and other air carrier workers whose jobs require regular interaction with passengers on recognizing and responding to potential human trafficking victims.” Becoming a BLI partner and using the virtual training is a simple and responsible way to adhere to the new requirements.

The BLI training is 20 minutes in length, and is comprised of four lessons that include:

  1. What is Human Trafficking?
  2. Indicators of Human Trafficking Activity
  3. Reporting Suspected Human Trafficking
  4. Indicator Challenge

Participating BLI partners instruct their employees using the BLI virtual training module and associated printed educational materials. The training may be integrated into partners' initial or refresher training for flight attendants, pilots, customer service representatives, and other aviation industry personnel.

The BLI training illustrates common indicators of trafficking that aviation employees may encounter, and how to immediately report suspected trafficking to law enforcement.

The BLI’s real-time reporting mechanism gives law enforcement the ability to research and analyze information, and to coordinate an appropriate and effective response.

To alert authorities about suspected trafficking, as outlined in the BLI training, airline employees can follow their airline's in-flight reporting protocol or call the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations Tip Line (1-866-DHS-2-ICE or 1-866-347-2423).

For airlines and aviation industry organizations wanting to learn more about using the BLI to inform their employees about human trafficking and their reporting options, contact bluecampaign@hq.dhs.gov and trafficking@dot.gov for more information.

Participation is open to any U.S. aviation industry organization. The Department of Transportation and the Department of Homeland Security are considering whether and how to expand the BLI training to foreign-flagged airlines.

The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Transportation are pleased to partner with the following organizations in combating human trafficking through the Blue Lightning Initiative. This list of active partners will be updated periodically.

Airlines

Airports

Associations

Training Institutes

Companies

 

  • Disclaimer: These links are being provided as a convenience and for informational purposes only; they do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security of any of the products, services or opinions of the corporation or organization or individual. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security bears no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of the external site or for that of subsequent links. Contact the external site for answers to questions regarding its content.

Airlines and aviation industry organizations can post the Blue Lightning Initiative poster, indicator card or basic Blue Campaign human trafficking awareness materials inside aircrafts as well as air the Blue Campaign infographic on pre-flight videos to educate passengers to recognize and report human trafficking.

We all have a responsibility to be vigilant. Passengers and the general public can help by learning the basic indicators of human trafficking by taking DHS Blue Campaign's general awareness training to recognize and report human trafficking.

To report suspected human trafficking to Federal law enforcement:
To get help from the National Human Trafficking Hotline:
or text HELP or INFO to
BeFree (233733)
To contact Blue Campaign:
Para reportar un posible caso de trata de personas:
Obtenga ayuda de la Línea Directa Nacional de Trata de Personas:
o enviando un mensaje de texto con HELP o INFO to
BeFree (233733)
Para contactar Blue Campaign:
Last Updated: 06/03/2022
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