In her commencement speech at Stanford University yesterday, Susan Rice, the U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations, urged graduates to close the gap between the developed and undeveloped worlds, by working to end, among other things, child labor, forced marriage, and human trafficking.
Today, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton released the 10th annual Trafficking in Persons Report, which "outlines the continuing challenges across the globe, including the United States."
This is the first time the report has included a chapter on the United States.
In a letter that accompanied the report, Clinton notes substantial progress since its first iteration was commissioned:
Countries that once denied the existence of human trafficking now work to identify victims and help them overcome the trauma of modern slavery, as well as hold responsible those who enslave others. Although progress has undoubtedly been made against this global phenomenon, there is more work to do. This annual assessment is an opportunity to diagnose the world’s efforts to implement the “3P” paradigm of prevention, protection, and prosecution. Based on lessons learned, we must work together with civil society, the corporate sector, and across governments through the “fourth P” – partnership – toward a world in which every man, woman, and child is safe from the hands of traffickers and can realize their God-given potential.
In this report, Clinton highlights several "key trends, including the suffering of women and children in involuntary domestic servitude, the challenges and successes in identifying and protecting victims, and the needs to include anti-trafficking policies in our response to natural disasters, as was evident in the aftermath of this year's earthquake in Haiti."
Thirteen countries have governments that "do not fully comply with the minimum standards and are not making significant efforts to do so." They are Burma, Congo, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Eritrea, Iran, Kuwait, Mauritania, North Korea, Papua New Guinea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Zimbabwe.