Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued the ninth annual Department of State Trafficking in Persons Report today. The report outlined major forms of human trafficking including forced labor, bonded labor, debt bondage among migrant laborers, involuntary domestic servitude, forced child labor, child soldiers, sex trafficking, and child sex trafficking and related abuses.
The report found that 5,212 incidents of human trafficking were prosecuted globally in 2008, the lowest number since recording began in 2003. Of these cases, there were 2,983 convictions. In addition to discussing punishment of trafficking offenders, the report also dealt with adequate protection of trafficking victims and the prevention of trafficking in persons.
In an introductory letter to the report from Secretary Clinton, she says: “The human trafficking phenomenon affects virtually every country, including the United States. In acknowledging America’s own struggle with modern-day slavery and slavery-related practices, we offer partnership. We call on every government to join us in working to build consensus and leverage resources to eliminate all forms of human trafficking.” Former President Bill Clinton issued the first US government policy concerning human trafficking in 1998.