Combatting Human Trafficking
January is National Human Trafficking Prevention Month
📅 January 30, 2024
January is National Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and IRS-Criminal Investigations (CI) is partnering with other government agencies to highlight indicators and federal initiatives to combat this crime. According to CI Chief Jim Lee, the agency investigates an average of 20 human trafficking each year.
Not all human trafficking results in sexual slavery and other forced labor. Russia’s war in Ukraine has exacerbated an already acute human-trafficking problem in the region. As desperate refugees flee continued Russian attacks on civilian infrastructure, organized trafficking organizations work to exploit their limited access to food, shelter, and other services by offering them fraudulent job opportunities and subsequently transporting them to foreign countries and forcing them into sex work. However, governments can also be active in human trafficking. The Kremlin has been removing Ukrainian children from hospitals and orphanages and trafficking them to Russia for “russification,” changing their names and their citizenships and forcing them to appear in propaganda videos.
Combating trafficking requires a strong coalition of local and global partners to share resources and information, better equip front-line workers, and track and respond to evolving trafficking trends, according to the US State Department. By partnering with survivors, who can provide critical insights into methodologies and financial transactions, stakeholders can ensure policies, strategies, and programs are survivor-centered, trauma-informed, and sensitive to the especially acute threat faced by minorities and other underserved populations.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022 exacerbated a human-trafficking crisis that has been present in the region since the fall of the Soviet Union.
Learn more in our Expert Insight Report: Human Trafficking Crisis After Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine in which we discuss the current situation, including: