Recommend involving Dept of Defense for awareness training of military forces. Many service members are unaware that their personal actions may contribute to the demand for sex trafficking victims. DOD already has strong policies and annual training for combating human trafficking, and therefore would be a great partner. Also, victims of human trafficking are often most closely associated with Prisoners of War (POWs) ...more »
What promising practices can be continued or emphasized?
Sex tourists usually have more assetts to seize and distribute to victim/survivor services.
Campaigns with airlines, hotels, etc. should be launched/increased: prioritizing highest-ranked destination countries. Buyers should be warned specifically of the consequences they can face. Customs officials should be trainined to identify potential sex buyers.
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on Coordination, Collaboration, Capacity: Federal Strategic Action Plan on Services for Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States, 2013-2017. I want to express my gratitude to all those in government and other sectors that supported the development of the draft national plan and for the foresight to design this significant strategic initiative to combat slavery. ...more »
Federal agencies need to connect the dots on relevant funded programs across the spectrum of services potentially needed and/or accessed by victims of human trafficking and others in need. Ensure that funded programs are fully aware of other programs serving relevant communities and providing relevant services and resources. OVC human trafficking grantees should be connected to other OVC and HHS funded programs in their ...more »
Asking survivors what type of awareness materials or efforts would have been effective to help them leave their trafficking situation is essential in creating effective outreach materials and awareness campaigns. The words "human trafficking" and even "slavery" don't resonate with many people as they look at their own situations. Asking survivors how they would have defined their situation when they were in it would ...more »
Change federal materials and remove the terms "rescue and restore" as these terms are not victim-centered or trauma-informed. It is widely agreed by experienced service providers that a "rescue mentality" is not effective in serving victims of human trafficking. We have seen this "rescue mentality" used by non-professionals to justify seriously irresponsible and damaging actions under the banner of "saving" victims. ...more »
Federal programs should focus funding on service providers that are community-based and directly serve vulnerable populations. Promote direct outreach to community-based organizations and vulnerable communities. Large public awareness and mainstream community events and conferences do not increase victim identification and access to services. While it is important for the general public to understand human trafficking, ...more »
Victims of trafficking need safe places where they can seek services without the fear of deportation or law enforcement consequences. We need to set up programs that provide a safe, trusted place for victims to seek services. We need to think about and implement ways to serve victims outside of the criminal justice system. There should be no requirement for a victim of human trafficking to report to law enforcement ...more »
In order to allow local governments to address human trafficking in a broad way, engage local officials and connect them with federal efforts. DOJ, OVC, ORR, and HSI have worked to address the whole issue of human trafficking in all its forms and of victims of many backgrounds. Local and state lawmakers are often influenced by activists who sensationalize one aspect of human trafficking. Engaging local governments ...more »
Federal agencies that fund victim services (and law enforcement response) should provide explicit training to funded programs on how to provide trauma-informed care and relate service provision performance measures to trauma-informed care. Federal agencies need to ensure this essential service is understood and provided to victims of trauma.
NHTVAP also only allows 9 months for pre-certified victims of trafficking and 3 months for certified neither of which is enough time to work with victims. For pre-certified it should mirror the amount of time it would take for the victim to have work authorization which can take up to a year and a half. This would allow the progress that has been made during the service period to continue rather than have victims go into ...more »
remember that we have a nexus of services under RHY that was created to address this problems. We see over and over again the reinvention of the wheel which is not sustainable. USE , train and support the existing system to do what is was structured to and created to do. Eliminate administrative barriers like restrictions on collaboration with law enforcement and child welfare to allow exceptions for placement with trafficked ...more »
Survivors of human trafficking really do love to see Justice done. In order for justice to happen sometimes innovative strategies need to be implemented in the investigative process and collaboration with law enforcement. Empower survivors to be involved in the 'real' task forces throughout the country who actually do the take downs. Involve them with the investigations when dealing with their traffickers, include them ...more »
Instead of constantly putting the burden on victims/survivors of sex trafficking to testify against their pimps/traffickers, have sex buyers testify and provide information. The 'high-frequency' users especially know more about the criminal networks than police and prosecutors may believe.
This is an approach that Massachusetts State Police and others around the country are using with increasing frequency.
We need a cultural shift to one where buying a human being is no longer tolerated, and is recognized for what it is: violence against women. Buyers and the general public need to understand the role they play in fueling sex trafficking and other forms of prostitution. Messages debunking the myths about prostitution (victimless crime, consenting adults) and geared toward the sex buyers can simultaneously send them a ...more »