top of page

Federal Anti-Trafficking Efforts

In 2013, the Federal Strategic Action Plan on Services for Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States was developed to increase the coordination, collaboration, and capacity of federal agencies in combatting human trafficking. The plan ensures that victims of trafficking have access to services through building capacity.

Department of Health and Human Services

Office on Trafficking in Persons (OTIP): funds services for foreign national victims of trafficking and it funds regional grants to identify foreign victims of human trafficking and to conduct outreach activities. OTIP also provides certification and eligibility letters so that foreign national victims of trafficking are eligible to receive federal and state benefits to the same extent as a refugee. In addition, OTIP has a national public awareness campaign called Rescue & Restore Victims of Human Trafficking and funds the National Human Trafficking Hotline.

Department of Homeland Security

  • Human Smuggling and Trafficking Unit investigates crimes of human trafficking primarily involving foreign national victims and participates in the Anti-Human Trafficking Task Forces and the Department's Blue Campaign.

  • Child Exploitation/Operation Predator, in conjunction with FBI, NCMEC, DOJ and ICAC, investigates crimes of child sexual exploitation, child pornography, and child sex tourism in the U.S. and abroad.

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS): Adjudicates applications for T and U visas which are available to foreign national victims of trafficking. Lawyers and advocates may check on the status of an already submitted case by calling the VAWA Unit Helpline at: 802-527-4888.

Department of Justice

Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS): Prosecutes cases of child pornography, sex trafficking of children, parental child abduction, and sex tourism.

  • Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit (HTPU): Prosecutes human trafficking crimes.

Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA): Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force Initiative funds collaborative law enforcement and non-governmental (NGO) partner Task Forces around the U.S.

Office for Victims of Crime (OVC): Provides technical assistance to the Anti-Human Trafficking Task Forces, and victim services funding for foreign national victims of trafficking, and pilot sites for U.S. citizen minor victims of trafficking.

Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS): The Human Trafficking Reporting System (HTRS), in conjunction with Northeastern University, tracks and analyzes human trafficking crimes reported by the Anti-Human Trafficking Task Forces.

National Institute of Justice (NIJ): Funds research on human trafficking in the U.S. and around the world.

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP): Internet Crimes Against Children Task Forces (ICAC) investigates internet-related crimes of child pornography and enticement, and implements a number of training and capacity-building initiatives related to the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC).

  • Civil Rights investigates crimes of human trafficking and participates in the Anti-Human Trafficking Task Forces.

  • Crimes Against Children (CAC) Innocence Lost Initiative investigates crimes involving sex trafficking of children.

  • Collaborates with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) and CEOS.

Department of Labor

  • Labor Bureau of International Labor (ILAB): Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor and Human Trafficking publishes reports on international child labor, forced labor and human trafficking and provides funding to combat international child labor.

  • Wage and Hour Division (WHD): Enforces federal labor laws including the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Workers Protection Act (AWPA) and assists with human trafficking investigations involving the violation of these laws.

Department of State

  • Conducts awareness-raising activities, diplomacy with other countries, and funding for international anti-trafficking initiatives.

  • Publishes the annual Trafficking in Persons Report, which rates countries on their anti-trafficking efforts.

  • Maintains a list of resources and information for individuals in the U.S. on a nonimmigrant work or travel visa.

Human Smuggling and Trafficking Center: A collaborative effort between the Department of State, Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and functions as a centralized information center for smuggling, human trafficking and national security.


bottom of page