International Justice Mission (IJM) welcomes the release of the 2018 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report by the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons at the U.S. Department of State. The annual report assesses and ranks 187 countries’ governments on their efforts to combat trafficking in persons through prosecution of perpetrators, protection for victims and prevention efforts. Because a poor ranking can impact a country’s foreign assistance from the U.S., it is a primary tool to engage with governments on where they have progressed over the past year and where are the remaining gaps in the public justice system to address and deter this crime.
“We know that putting an end to human trafficking is a bipartisan objective. . .our commitment to ending and fighting this together is very strong,” Mike Pompeo, U.S. Secretary of State.
“The TIP Report is a powerful diplomatic tool in getting governments to own their responsibility in addressing modern day slavery within their borders,” said Tim Gehring, Director of Global Policy at IJM. “Its effectiveness is dependent on the validity and honesty of the report. It is imperative that the rankings and narrative of each country, including our own, are solely based on the government’s efforts to combat the crime and must be free from political considerations or other external influences that may impact a country’s ranking.”
There are an estimated 46 million people living in modern slavery today. The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons leads the U.S. Government’s efforts to address trafficking and forced labor around the world through the annual release of the TIP Report and its international grants program. Last year at the release of the TIP Report, the State Department announced the launch of Programs to End Modern Slavery (PEMS), an innovative foreign assistance program that supports transformational programs that seek to achieve a measurable reduction in the prevalence of trafficking and forced labor in the countries with the highest number of victims.
“PEMS sets a new bar for U.S. efforts to lead in the fight against slavery globally, and the TIP Office should be commended for its role in administering this game-changing initiative,” said Gehring. “With that in mind, for the Office to continue combatting this crime and providing protection to millions of vulnerable persons throughout the world, IJM strongly encourages President Trump to appoint an Ambassador-at-Large to lead it. A strong leader at the helm will mean that U.S. investments in this area will result in providing freedom for those who need it most.”
International Justice Mission is a leading international anti-slavery organization working in 17 communities across the developing world to combat slavery, trafficking, and other forms of violence against the poor by rescuing and restoring victims, holding perpetrators accountable, and transforming broken public justice systems.