The State Department advises U.S. citizens overseas to exercise increased caution because of increased tensions around the world and the potential for terrorist attacks, demonstrations, or violent actions against U.S. citizens and interests.
“The scale of this problem is vast,” said Secretary of State Antony Blinken, announcing the report’s findings July 19 at the State Department, noting that nearly 25 million people are currently victims of trafficking. “The United States is committed to fighting it because trafficking destabilizes societies, it undermines economies, it harms workers, it enriches those who exploit them, it undercuts legitimate business, and most fundamentally, because it is so profoundly wrong.”
The report also details how human trafficking threats have risen in Ukraine after Russian President Vladimir Putin’s further invasion in February.
“We are deeply concerned about the risks of human trafficking faced by individuals internally displaced by the war, as well as those fleeing Ukraine, an estimated 90 percent of whom are women and children,” Blinken says in his introduction to the report. “The food insecurity and other broader effects of Russia’s war exacerbate trafficking risks around the globe.”
To celebrate those who help combat human trafficking in their home country, the report also honors six Trafficking in Persons Report Heroes, five of whom will participate in the State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program to engage with American communities and organizations committed to ending human trafficking: