[Excerpt] Trafficking in persons (TIP), or human trafficking, is both an international and a domestic crime that involves violations of labor, public health, and human rights standards. As such, the United States and the international community have committed to combating the various manifestations of human trafficking. Anti-TIP efforts have accelerated in the United States since the enactment of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA, Div. A of P.L. 106-386), and internationally since the passage of the U.N. Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children (hereinafter, U.N. Protocol), adopted in 2000. Congress has been active in enacting anti-TIP laws, appropriating funds, and authorizing and evaluating anti-trafficking programs. Since 2000, Congress reauthorized the TVPA three times, most recently in 2008. The 110th Congress passed the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Reauthorization Act of 2008 (TVPRA of 2008, P.L. 110-457), which authorized appropriations for FY2008 through FY2011, among other provisions. The 112th Congress has introduced several bills related to human trafficking, including bills to reauthorize the TVPA beyond FY2011.
This report focuses on international and domestic human trafficking and U.S. policy responses, with particular emphasis on the TVPA and its subsequent reauthorizations. The report begins with a description of key TIP-related definitions and an overview of the human trafficking problem. It follows with an overview of major foreign policy responses to international human trafficking. The report then focuses on responses to trafficking into and within the United States, examining relief for trafficking victims in the United States and discussing U.S. law enforcement efforts to combat domestic trafficking. The report concludes with an overview of current anti-trafficking legislation and an analysis of policy issues.