Data Matters

Trafficking Infrastructure Grows: New York’s Statewide Initiative

In the past month, the State of New York has introduced 11 new Human Trafficking Intervention Courts (including Buffalo and Rochester, near where I live in upstate NY). According to the New York Times, the new courts are modeled after three pilot projects that had been established earlier in New York City, and the “initiative is believed to be the first of its kind in the nation.” The NY law resembles the federal U.S. law in targeting force, fraud and coercion (what the national law dubs “severe forms” of trafficking)....

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The United States as Global Sheriff: Unilateral Sanctions and Human Trafficking by Janie Chuang

In recent years, the issue of human trafficking – the recruitment or movement of persons by means of coercion or deception into exploitative labor or slavery-like practices – has moved from the margins to the mainstream political agenda. The rapid proliferation of international, regional and domestic anti-trafficking laws bespeaks universal condemnation of the practice, but belies deep divisions among States over how to define and approach the problem. It is thus significant that the international community was able to reach...

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Rescuing Trafficking from Ideological Capture: Prostitution Reform and Anti-Trafficking Law and Policy by Janie Chuang

In the decade since it became a priority on the United States’ national agenda, the issue of human trafficking has spawned enduring controversy. New legal definitions of “trafficking” were codified in international and U.S. law in 2000, but what conduct qualifies as “trafficking” remains hotly contested. Despite shared moral outrage over the plight of trafficked persons, debates over whether trafficking encompasses voluntary prostitution continue to rend the anti-trafficking advocacy community—and are as intractable as debates over...

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