WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement on the State Department’s publication of the 2022 Trafficking in Persons Report:
“The State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report is the touchstone for the United States’ commitment and credibility in fighting the scourge of modern day slavery. As human traffickers continue to seize any opportunity to exploit people in desperate circumstances, including victims of war and conflict, this year’s report bolsters our ability to hold governments from Caracas to Moscow, Tehran to La Habana, accountable for their failure to take basic steps to address human trafficking and protect millions of victims. I am pleased to see this year’s report recommendations further link efforts to prevent and combat both corruption and trafficking in persons, the report’s additional focus on climate change as a threat multiplier for trafficking, and its increased emphasis on China’s reprehensible use of forced labor in its Belt and Road Initiative. I also commend the Biden administration for spotlighting the Cuban regime’s forced labor programs and the trafficking of medical personnel.
“As we continue our oversight efforts to make certain the TIP report never again falls subject to political manipulation, I am pleased to see this year’s report is an objective evaluation of the current state of modern day slavery. It will be an indispensable tool for the U.S. Congress and the Biden administration to hold perpetrators of human trafficking accountable, protect victims, and to prevent millions more from falling prey.”
Chairman Menendez has worked for years to ensure the TIP report serves as an unbiased, powerful tool to combat human trafficking including through avoiding the politicization of the annual TIP report rankings for countries with poor human trafficking records. He most recently authored and introduced the bipartisan International Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2022 to further strengthen U.S. efforts to counter human trafficking around the world.