Child Victims and Witnesses Support Materials: Human Trafficking
View best practices for a justice system response to children and youth who are victims or witnesses of human trafficking. These materials, written for young survivors, feature characters who explain how the justice system works in a developmentally appropriate way.
Now available in five additional languages: African French, Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese (simplified), Spanish, and Vietnamese.
Publications and Products
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2018–June 2019: Services for Victims of Human Trafficking, Office for Victims of Crime, April 2020
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2017–June 2018: Services for Victims of Human Trafficking, Office for Victims of Crime, April 2020
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2016–June 2017: Services for Victims of Human Trafficking, Office for Victims of Crime, April 2020
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2015–June 2016: Enhanced Collaborative Model to Combat Human Trafficking Program, Office for Victims of Crime, September 2017
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2015–June 2016: Comprehensive Services for All Victims of Human Trafficking Program, Office for Victims of Crime, September 2017
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2015–June 2016: Services for Victims of Human Trafficking, Office for Victims of Crime, September 2017
Office for Victims of Crime TIMS Snapshot Report, July 2015–June 2016: Specialized Services for Victims of Human Trafficking Program, Office for Victims of Crime, September 2017
Office for Victims of Crime Snapshot Report: Data Summary From OVC’s Trafficking Information Management System (TIMS), January 1 through December 31, 2012, Office for Victims of Crime, March 2016
Enhanced Collaborative Model to Combat Human Trafficking, Bureau of Justice Assistance-Sponsored, January 2020
Alternative Forms of Justice for Human Trafficking Survivors: Considering Procedural, Restorative, and Transitional Justice, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, March 2018
Comparing Narratives of Justice: How Survivors, Criminal Justice Stakeholders, and Service Providers Perceive Justice in Human Trafficking Cases, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, March 2018
Delivering Justice for Human Trafficking Survivors: Implications for Practice, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, March 2018
Justice in Their Own Words: Perceptions and Experiences of (In)Justice among Human Trafficking Survivors, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, March 2018
Capturing Human Trafficking Victimization Through Crime Reporting, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, 2018
Labor Trafficking in North Carolina: A Statewide Survey Using Multistage Sampling, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, 2018
Understanding the Perspective of the Victim: Recognizing the Complexity of Sex Trafficking Situations, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention-Sponsored, October 2017
Evaluation of Strategies to Stabilize and Integrate Adult Survivors of Human Trafficking to the United States, National Institute of Justice-Sponsored, April 2016
Missing Children, State Care, and Child Sex Trafficking Engaging the Judiciary in Building a Collaborative Response, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention-Sponsored, June 2015
National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking, U.S. Department of Justice, January 2022
National Advisory Committee on the Sex Trafficking of Children and Youth in the United States: Best Practices and Recommendations for States, National Advisory Committee on the Sex Trafficking of Children and Youth in the United States, September 2020
Senior Policy Operating Group Public Awareness and Outreach Committee Guide For Public Awareness Materials (non-binding), February 2020, President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
Toolkit for Building Survivor-Informed Organizations, February 2018, Office of Trafficking in Persons-sponsored
Adult Human Trafficking Screening Tool and Guide, January 2018, Office of Trafficking in Persons-sponsored
Domestic Victims of Human Trafficking Demonstration Projects, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, September 2017
Combating Trafficking Native Youth Toolkit on Human Trafficking, Administration for Native Americans and Office on Trafficking in Persons, 2017
Human Trafficking Leadership Academy Survivor-Informed Practice: A Self-Guided Assessment Tool, Office on Trafficking in Persons- and the Office on Women’s Health-sponsored, 2017
Federal Strategic Action Plan on Services for Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States: Fiscal Year 2015 Status Report, Administration for Children and Families, November 2016
A Victim-Centered Approach to Sex Trafficking Cases, Federal Bureau of Investigation, November 2015
Resources and Statistics
CrimeSolutions is a searchable online database of evidence-based programs covering a range of justice-related topics. The site is a tool to understand, access, and integrate scientific evidence about programs into programmatic and policy decisions.
Legal Services Corporation
Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is a private, nonprofit corporation established by Congress in 1974. LSC makes grants to independent local programs across the country to provide civil legal services to Americans without considerable financial means. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act granted the LSC the responsibility to extend program services to those eligible for T and U Visas.
The Vicarious Trauma Toolkit
Research shows that vicarious trauma, when left unaddressed, can lead to staff burnout, turnover, stress, and a lesser quality of services for victims. This OVC toolkit offers guidance to help organizations strengthen their ability to address work-related exposure to trauma. The toolkit contains a state-of-the-art repository with nearly 500 resources for the fields of victim services, emergency medical services, fire services, law enforcement, and other allied professions. The toolkit includes a Blueprint for a Vicarious Trauma-Informed Organization to help organizations begin the process of becoming more trauma-informed.
VictimLaw, a comprehensive online database of federal, state, and Tribal victims’ rights law, is supported by OVC. It includes victims’ rights provisions that pertain specifically to victims of human trafficking in several categories of rights that are most commonly enacted from state to state.
This "one-stop storefront" provides a unified process for all customers of federal grants to find funding opportunities and apply for funding. Grants.gov provides access to all discretionary grants offered by 26 federal grant-making agencies, including the U.S. Departments of Justice, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security, and Labor.
In addition to OVC, many Federal Government agencies are working to combat human trafficking. While not a comprehensive list of all anti-trafficking efforts, the below list provides a summary of many of these initiatives.
U.S. Department of Justice
The U.S. Department of Justice is committed to a collaborative approach to combating human trafficking and improving services for victims. Visit the U.S. Department of Justice's Human Trafficking website and view the information below to learn more.
Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS)
CEOS works to combat incidences of child exploitation and sex trafficking of minors. Issues under the CEOS umbrella include child pornography, illegal interstate or international transportation of minors, international parental abduction, computer-related exploitation of children, and child victimization on federal and Indian lands.
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
The FBI is responsible for investigating human trafficking. The FBI also runs the Innocence Lost National Initiative, focusing on sex trafficking of children within the United States.
Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit
The U.S. Department of Justice’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit works closely with Assistant United States Attorneys and law enforcement agencies to streamline fast-moving trafficking investigations, ensure consistent application of trafficking statutes, and identify multijurisdictional trafficking networks.
National Institute of Justice
The National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, funds research on—
- the nature and extent of human trafficking,
- detecting and investigating traffickers,
- prosecuting traffickers, and
- services for trafficking victims.
Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Justice Programs, implements training and capacity-building initiatives related to the commercial sexual exploitation of children. The office funds the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which helps prevent child abduction and sexual exploitation; find missing children; and operates a toll free missing children's hotline. The office also funds projects to investigate the Internet-related crimes of child pornography and enticement through the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force program.
U.S. Agency for International Development
The U.S. Agency for International Development supports international programs to prevent trafficking, protect and assist victims, and support prosecutions.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
The Family Violence Prevention and Services Program
The Family Violence Prevention and Services Program of the Family and Youth Services Bureau, at the Administration of Children & Families, administers the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act, the primary federal funding stream dedicated to the support of emergency shelter and related assistance for victims of domestic violence and their children.
Office of Refugee Resettlement
The Office of Refugee Resettlement, at the Administration of Children & Families, helps refugees and other special populations, such as adult victims of severe forms of trafficking, obtain economic and social self-sufficiency in the United States.
Office on Trafficking in Persons
The Office on Trafficking in Persons, at the Administration of Children & Families, seeks to create pathways to freedom for victims and those at risk of human trafficking by—
- developing anti-trafficking strategies, policies, and programs to prevent human trafficking,
- empowering health and human services organizations to respond to human trafficking,
- increasing victim identification and access to services, and
- strengthening health and well-being outcomes of survivors.
Visit the Office on Trafficking in Persons' Map Domestic Victims of Human Trafficking Program Grantees to locate anti-trafficking service providers funded by this office.
Runaway and Homeless Youth Program
Through the Runaway and Homeless Youth Program, the Family and Youth Services Bureau, Administration of Children & Families, supports street outreach, emergency shelters, and longer-term transitional living and maternity group home programs to serve and protect these young people.
U.S. Department of State
Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons conducts awareness-raising activities, diplomacy with other countries, and funding for international anti-trafficking initiatives.
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
The Blue Campaign provides information on training and outreach, how traffickers operate, and victim assistance to help keep the public informed.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services adjudicates applications for T and U visas, which are available to foreign national victims of trafficking. Lawyers and advocates may check on the status of an already submitted case by calling the Violence Against Women Act Unit Helpline at 802–527–4888.
U.S. Department of Defense
Combating Trafficking in Persons
The Combating Trafficking in Persons Program Office establishes policy and ensures that the services, combatant commands, and defense agencies have the necessary tools to prevent trafficking.
U.S. Department of Education
National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments
This Center offers a Human Trafficking in America’s Schools guide to help school officials understand how human trafficking impacts schools; recognize the indicators of possible child trafficking; and develop policies, protocols, and partnerships to address and prevent the exploitation of children.
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
HUD's Continuum of Care Program—
- promotes communitywide commitment to the goal of ending homelessness,
- provides funding for efforts by nonprofit providers and state and local governments to quickly rehouse homeless individuals and families while minimizing the trauma,
- promotes access to and effect use of mainstream programs by homeless individuals and families, and
- optimizes self-sufficiency among individuals and families experiencing homelessness.
U.S. Department of Labor
Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor & Human Trafficking
The Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor & Human Trafficking publishes reports on international child labor, forced labor, and human trafficking. The Office also funds programs to combat international child labor.
Wage and Hour Division
The Wage and Hour Division enforces federal labor laws including the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Workers Protection Act. The Division assists with human trafficking investigations involving the violation of these laws.
The Division's Timesheet App allows users to record the hours that they work and includes a function to calculate overtime pay. The app is available to download in both English and Spanish.
Employment & Training Administration
The Employment & Training Administration sponsors CareerOneStop. This program offers services such as job-search, job-placement assistance, job-counseling services, and more to human trafficking survivors.
U.S. Department of Transportation
The Department of Transportation trains transportation employees and the traveling public to recognize and report possible instances of human trafficking.
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Anti-discrimination laws enforced by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, particularly those prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, and sex, are an integral part of the fight against human trafficking.
It is difficult to measure the magnitude of human trafficking in the United States. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, due to the nature of human trafficking, many of these crimes are never identified by local, state, Tribal, and federal law enforcement agencies that investigate them.
Although statistics are available, they provides an incomplete picture of this complex issue. A National Institute of Justice-funded study “found that inadequate victim identification was a problem not only for law enforcement but also for victim service providers.”
Existing data on human trafficking focuses on identified victims. However in order for researchers to make accurate estimations on the prevalence of human trafficking, law enforcement, victim service providers, social services, and others need to be able to better identify victims.
View OVC human trafficking grantee data on services provided to trafficking victims. Data from OVC human trafficking grantees is available on total clients served, new clients served, services most frequently provided to clients, and more.
Note that data in these reports only represent services provided by OVC-funded human trafficking grantees and does not represent services provided to all human trafficking victims in the United States, nor do all human trafficking victims seek or receive services.
For further information, view the following resources.
- Bureau of Justice Statistics’ Human Trafficking page: provides data as required by the Combat Human Trafficking Act of 2015.
- Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reporting Program site: provides annual data on human trafficking reported by law enforcement agencies.
- National Institute of Justice’s Human Trafficking page: includes research on the nature and extent of human trafficking.
- Attorney General’s Annual Trafficking in Persons Report to Congress: includes victimization data related to government efforts to combat trafficking.
- Department of State’s Trafficking in Persons Annual Report: provides estimates on the prevalence of human trafficking around the globe.
View the Human Trafficking Capacity Building Center’s Collecting Data to Better Understand Human Trafficking fact sheet for information on gathering data on human trafficking to inform your organization’s efforts to better identify and serve trafficking victims in the community.