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Bureau of International Labor Affairs
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Human Trafficking

Human trafficking, or Trafficking in Persons, is a crime against humanity that affects both adults and children.

The Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime defines human trafficking as "the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation."

The most common forms of human trafficking occur for the purpose of labor or sexual exploitation.

Our Strategy

The Bureau of International Labor Affairs funds projects to combat exploitative child labor, including child trafficking. These projects support efforts to provide assistance to children in or at risk of the worst forms of child labor, including those that could potentially be victims of trafficking.

Pursuant to the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, as amended, the Bureau produces a List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor that serves as a resource for governments, business, civil society, and others. ILAB has also published an online resource, Reducing Child Labor and Forced Labor: A Toolkit for Responsible Businesses, that can help businesses combat child labor and forced labor in their global supply chains. 


  • Enhance victim identification and service delivery for victims of trafficking.
  • Expand public awareness of human trafficking.
  • Increase engagement with governments, workers, and employers to combat human trafficking

Further Resources