The U.S. State Department released its yearly Trafficking in Persons report on June 19, 2012.
The introduction states, "A century and a half later, slavery persists in the United States and around the globe, and many victims' stories remain sadly similar to those of the past. It is estimated that as many as 27 million men, women, and children around the world are victims of what is now often described with the umbrella term "human trafficking." The work that remains in combating this crime is the work of fulfilling the promise of freedom—freedom from slavery for those exploited and the freedom for survivors to carry on with their lives. The promise of freedom is not unique to the United States, but has become
an international promise through Article 4 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Palermo Protocol to the Transnational Organized Crime Convention. The challenge facing all who work to end modern slavery is not just that of punishing traffickers and protecting those who are victimized by this crime, but of putting safeguards in place to ensure the freedom of future generations.
...Traffickers are criminals. Governments—whichalone have the power to punish criminals and provide legal recourse to survivors—cannot waver in their efforts to confront modern slavery.
Like previous editions, the 2012 Trafficking in Persons Report satisfies a statutory mandate to look closely at how governments around the world are fulfilling their obligations to combat this crime. It emphasizes continued and strong government action as the foundation upon which the fight against modern slavery is built. And it both makes government-specific recommendations, and calls upon the international community as a whole to advance a more robust victim-centered response to this crime."