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Human Trafficking Examined by House Subcommittee

On April 22, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights, and International Organizations held a hearing, “Accountability and Transformation: Tier Rankings in the Fight Against Human Trafficking.”

Chair Chris Smith (R-NJ) stated, “The UN Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights, following its May 2014 review of China, noted that it was ‘seriously concerned about reported instances of the use of coercive measures, including forced abortion and forced sterilization, with a view to limiting births.’” He continued, “This is unacceptable. Approximately 40 million women and girls are missing from the population, making China a regional magnet for sex and bride trafficking of women from neighboring countries…And yet China does not take responsibility for the government-made disaster and provide these women with aid…Yet we gave China a pass, turning our backs on these suffering women.”

Mark Lagon, president, Freedom House, stated, “First, human trafficking consists of both sexual and labor exploitation. While labor trafficking victimizes more people, sex trafficking yields more profits to the traffickers on the backs of its victims.” Mr. Lagon explained, “To confront all these various types of trafficking and implement rule of law, we need to: (1) preserve the integrity of objective, hard-hitting rankings in the [Department of State’s] TIP [Trafficking in Persons] Report, and (2) foster partnerships and leveraged resources (as S. 553 [the End Modern Slavery Initiative Act] fosters)…Those candid assessments and funded multi stakeholder programs are what we owe the women, men, children, migrant workers, minorities, disadvantaged castes, and other fellow human beings vulnerable to contemporary enslavement.”

The following witnesses also testified during the hearing:

  • Shay Cullen, president and chief executive officer, PREDA Foundation; and
  • Jesse Eaves, director of policy and government relations, Humanity United.


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