On January 15, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published its first Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking, the Importation of Goods Produced with Forced Labor, and Child Sexual Exploitation.
Combatting Human Trafficking
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking, the Importation of Goods Produced with Forced Labor, and Child Sexual Exploitation articulates the Department’s long-term approach for combating these crimes and serves as a framework to prioritize resources and monitor progress. Additionally, this strategy supports the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, a Cabinet-level entity that coordinates federal efforts to combat human trafficking.
On Oct. 16, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced a partnership with Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Houston Airport System (HAS) Director Mario Diaz, forging an outreach campaign to combat human trafficking through Blue Lightning Initiative (BLI) program.
On July 1, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin K. McAleenan will travel to San Salvador, El Salvador for a two-day visit to discuss continued collaboration in addressing the root causes of irregular migration, enhancing security and targeting transnational criminal organizations. Following his visit to El Salvador, he will travel to Palmerola, Honduras.
On June 11th, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin K. McAleenan issued the following statement regarding the United States Strategy on Women, Peace, and Security released by the White House to address problems faced by women and girls in conflict and disaster affected areas around the world:
Predators and human traffickers can gain access to victims online because people are not always aware of how dangerous online environments can be or how to keep themselves safe. While the Internet is a great way to stay in touch with friends and family, predators oftentimes take advantage of this and actively stalk online meeting places such as chat rooms and social media sites to lure their victims.
The Blue Lightning Initiative 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 airline personnel to identify potential traffickers and human trafficking victims, and to report their suspicions to federal law enforcement. To date, more than 100,000 personnel in the aviation industry have been trained through the BLI, and actionable tips continue to be reported to law enforcement.
January was National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and while the month has past, I want to take a moment to reaffirm our dedication to protecting victims of human trafficking and bringing their perpetrators to justice.
S&T is incorporating social science research into DHS’s counter-human trafficking approach through two foundational projects: (1) the Counter-human Trafficking and Modern Slavery Foundational Effort and (2) the Human Trafficking System Analysis and Technology Roadmap.
DHS S&T seeks to address the growing problem of human trafficking through social science-based research.