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Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking-in-Persons Visits the City Bar Justice Center

by Caroline Nahill August 5, 2019

On July 24, 2019, the City Bar Justice Center’s Immigrant Justice Project hosted Ambassador John Cotton Richmond, the Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking-in-Persons, for a small, informal meeting to discuss the release of the 2019 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report. Attendees at the meeting included staff members from the City Bar Justice Project and several other non-governmental organizations, including The Legal Aid Society, Safe Horizon, WomenKind and the Sex Workers Project of the Urban Justice Center.

The TIP Report is a federally-mandated annual report first instituted by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000.  The report consolidates information from U.S. embassies, government officials, nongovernmental and civil society organizations, academic reports and studies, and independent research to evaluate the efforts of 187 countries to combat human trafficking.

The TIP Report categorizes every country into four tiers based on their efforts to combat human trafficking (Tier 1, Tier 2, Tier 2 Watch List, and Tier 3), and mandates a sanction of non-humanitarian U.S. foreign aid for the countries which fall within Tier 3.

During the meeting, Ambassador Richmond discussed his office’s goals following the trends revealed in the 2019 TIP Report, including continued efforts to provide survivors of human trafficking with a voice in prevention policy, challenges of combating state-sanctioned forced labor globally, and plans for the 20th anniversary of the TVPA next year. We also discussed the ongoing challenge of measuring success in an issue area where a lack of data is an ongoing challenge and the ways in which success may look different from governmental and direct services perspectives.

After our meeting at the City Bar Justice Center, the Immigrant Justice Project staff attended a more formal presentation on the 2019 TIP report from Ambassador Richmond at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations.

Thank you to Ambassador Richmond for taking the time to speak to us and to all of the organizations who participated in the conversation. We look forward to continued partnership leading into the milestone 20th anniversary of the TVPA next year.  July also marks the World Day Against Trafficking on July 30.

Caroline Nahill is an intern with the City Bar Justice Center’s Immigrant Justice Project.

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