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News Release

Commemorating National Human Trafficking Awareness Day

WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs Martha Newton released the following statement recognizing National Human Trafficking Awareness Day.

“On National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, we reflect and act on the prevention of human trafficking, protection for its victims, and prosecution of its perpetrators. This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, a seminal piece of legislation that established human trafficking and related offenses as federal crimes.

“As President Trump has proclaimed, ‘Human trafficking is a modern form of slavery. It is not enough merely to denounce this horrific assault on human dignity; we must actively work to prevent and end this barbaric exploitation of innocent victims.’

“At the center of the Department of Labor’s mission is the welfare of the worker and ensuring that all workers have dignity and are not vulnerable to human trafficking. 

“The Department of Labor has a vital role to play in the fight against trafficking in persons in the United States and abroad. Our extensive work to combat human trafficking ranges from conducting in-depth research to identifying goods made with forced—and often trafficked—labor as well as efforts to tackle root causes and prevent trafficking, such as training on workers’ rights for vulnerable populations. By leading global efforts to end trafficking and forced labor and providing innovative research and tools to combat trafficking, as well as through our domestic anti-trafficking work, the Department seeks to be part of the whole-of-government solution to this unacceptable global phenomenon. On this day, let us reflect on what more we all can do to prevent human trafficking, both at home and abroad.”

The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

Bureau of International Labor Affairs
January 11, 2020
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Media Contact: Emily Weeks
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