New Trafficking Legislation in the US– Don’t you just love America??

Cheers! This news is really a little bit old, but rather important and one of Bush’s last moves before handing anti-trafficking initiatives over to Prez Obama and our trusty Hillary– who have both already been cited for their outspoken support of anti-trafficking legislation and initiatives.  No matter how many qualms you may or may not have had with Bush, he definitely DID DID DID do some major good for the anti-trafficking movement in the US.  I have no doubt that Obama will continue to push things through, BUT let’s not get lazy! Remember that our voices, pressure, letters, calls, petitions, community awareness, artwork, films, WALLETS and  lunchroom conversations add to creating a culture of intolerance for trafficking in all it’s sneaky forms.  If you want to learn more about what you can do– check out Free the Slaves website here.  Also, check out Polaris Projects Action Center, especially the Slavery Still Exists Campaign ,which I had the privilage to help strategize for its national launch this past summer as a fellow there. Want to be inspired by a group of normal folks like you who are doing INCREDIBLE work in their community in DC to raise awareness and support anti-trafficking initiatives locally/globally/nationally?  Check out my friends at the Stop Modern Slavery community group in DC. Here is their Meetup page too.

ooo, so much to say, so much to do– it’s really exciting 🙂

See the article below—

(P.S. I can honestly say I have met over half the people in this photo!! That’s what a year of hyperactive networking in DC will do to you….)

Signing the Reauthorization of the TVPA!!

Signing the Reauthorization of the TVPA!!

(Excerpts from from  IJM- International Justice Mission)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On December 23, 2008, President George W. Bush signed the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act into law. President Bush was joined in the Oval Office by anti-trafficking leaders including IJM President and CEO Gary Haugen; Congressman Bobby Scott; Congressman Chris Smith; Attorney General Michael Mukasey; Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff; Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte; Dr. Kevin Bales, President of Free the Slaves; and Bradley Myles, Deputy Director, Polaris Project.

The William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, which increased funding for the U.S. Department of State’s Global Trafficking in Persons office (G/TIP) and established several critical policy reforms, was unanimously reauthorized by Congress on December 10, International Human Rights Day.

The bill increased funding for the U.S. Department of State’s Global Trafficking in Persons office (G/TIP), which coordinates the U.S. response to human trafficking and modern-day slavery, and established several policy reforms. For example, HR7311 de-links benefits and services for trafficking victims in the U.S. from the requirement that they assist with Justice Department investigations and prosecutions. The bill also allows trafficking victims in the U.S. to qualify for a T-visa without necessarily participating in law enforcement efforts, with the expectation that victims will be more likely to come forward to assist prosecutors once they are assured that they will not be deported back to countries where they were abused, exploited, and trafficked.

Here is a link to the full article–

http://www.ijm.org/ijmnews/uscongresspassesreauthorizationofanti-traffickinglegislation

Also, Hagar International has been a grantee of the United States Department of State’s Global Trafficking in Person’s Office (GTIP). Signing this law potentially creates more funding for organizations like Hagar that are striving to create sustainable solutions to modern slavery and trafficking.

Here is a link to the G/TIP office and their annual reports that grade each country on their anti-trafficking efforts.  It is released every June.  While some argue that it can be a bit politically biased (note that all EU countries are tier one, all enemies of the state are toddering around tier 2 or 3), it does serve as a generally credible and important, reliable document for the anti-trafficking world. There is still a lot of untapped potential for leverage there, though (in my opinion).

Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons

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2 Responses to “New Trafficking Legislation in the US– Don’t you just love America??”

  1. Tomly Says:

    is kevin bales in the photo with W. ? which one is he?
    (i bet he’s the tall one, back right — that just looks like him)

  2. Ted Burrett Says:

    After reading the article, I feel that I really need more information on the topic. Could you suggest some more resources please?

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