The Common Good

Finally, the U.S. Gets Graded on Its Anti-Human Trafficking Efforts

On Monday morning, the U.S. State Department released the Trafficking in Persons Report 2010, the 10th such assessment of international efforts to combat human trafficking through what the Palermo Protocol describes as the 3P approach: prevention, criminal prosecution, and victim protection. Significantly, this year was the first time the United States' efforts had been evaluated.

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For a summer, I worked at Oasis USA, an LA-based organization focused on domestic trafficking, and it always bemused me that the State Department got to appraise every other country's anti-trafficking efforts but left trafficking in America unmentioned, particularly since an estimated 17,500 foreign nationals are trafficked into the country and about 200,000 American children are at high risk for trafficking into the sex industry every year.

So it's about time that the U.S. included itself in such reports. It feels like we're at least trying to take the log out of our own eye first, which is a significant step in addressing the global challenge of modern slavery.

portrait-justin-fungJustin Fung is the policy and organizing assistant for Sojourners. A graduate of University College London (Law) and Fuller Theological Seminary (Theology/Cross-Cultural Studies), he blogs regularly at Gershom's Journal and tweets from @justinfung.

+ Fight international child trafficking. Sign the petition in support of the Child Protection Compact Act.

+ Washington, DC area residents are also invited to attend the FREE screening of the rockumentary CALL+RESPONSE, featuring Cornel West, Switchfoot, Matisyahu, Nicholas Kristof, Talib Kweli, and Moby, on June 22 at the GALA Hispanic Theatre. For more details and to RSVP, click here.

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