Remarks for Panel 1 of the Global Plan of Action and Enduring Trafficking Issues and Gaps, Inter Alia, the Trafficking of Women and Children

Representative French Hill
Member of Congress
New York, New York
November 22, 2021

Remarks for Panel 1 of the Global Plan of Action and Enduring Trafficking Issues and Gaps, Including, Inter Alia, the Trafficking of Women and Children, Particularly Girls, for the Purpose of Sexual Exploitation


Excellencies and panelists, on behalf of the United States I thank you for offering your perspectives on these enduring issues in our global anti-trafficking responses.

As a member of the United States Congress’ Financial Services Committee, I was one of the original sponsors of the body’s Counter-Trafficking Initiative.

One of the most enduring challenge is making human trafficking a financially risky undertaking. Organized crime groups, rogue actors, and corrupt governments must not be able to profit from the trafficking of our fellow human beings.

Governments must implement anti-money laundering laws that make human trafficking a predicate offense, in line with the UN Trafficking in Persons Protocol; and partner with financial institutions to detect suspicious transactions; and conduct parallel financial investigations when investigating human trafficking causes.

It is important for governments to track money flows, collect evidence tied to human trafficking crimes, and most importantly empower survivors by restoring their financial identity and credit. This is vital to the recovery process.

Another major challenge is addressing complex large migration flows that significantly impact many countries of origin, transit, and destination. In the Western Hemisphere, facilitators of migrant smuggling and human trafficking often operate with impunity, manipulating legal systems while exploiting others for their own profit – at an estimate of $400 million or more per month in this year alone according to the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol.

We must re-double our efforts to address the root causes of irregular migration, to identify victims of human trafficking within migration flows, and to provide these victims with protection and assistance without delay. Finally, we must work together to hold migrant smugglers and human traffickers accountable through thorough investigations and effective prosecution.

This requires working closely with other governments in origin, transit and destination countries to collect and preserve evidence and seize the profits of these illegal activities.

Excellencies, can the panel identify best practices for eliminating trafficking at the source and holding traffickers to account across international borders?