Congressman Bryan Steil (WI-01) and Congresswoman Madeleine Dean (PA-04) this week introduced the Exposing the Financing of Human Trafficking Act (H.R. 8185). This bipartisan legislation will hold foreign countries accountable for their efforts to investigate, prevent, and prosecute financial criminal activities associated with human trafficking.  

“Human trafficking is a horrendous crime that presents a real threat to people all over the world. This heinous crime is happening right here in Wisconsin, and we cannot turn a blind eye,” said Steil. “My bill takes an important step to combat this crisis by ensuring our international partners do their part in our global fight against human trafficking.”  

The U.S. currently uses the Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report issued by the Department of State to engage foreign governments to combat human trafficking. The TIP report places countries into one of three tiers based on the extent of their government’s efforts to comply with the “minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking.” A country’s tier designation is then used to condition aid.  

The TIP report looks at several criteria, but it does not currently cover efforts to disrupt illicit finance. This bill requires the existing Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report to evaluate foreign countries’ efforts to investigate, prevent, and prosecute financial criminal activities associated with the facilitation of human trafficking. 

“Human trafficking is an evil that, unfortunately, exists everywhere,” said Dean. “We must fight this crime from every possible angle – which is exactly what this bill does by ensuring that those financially involved in human trafficking are investigated as well. I’m grateful to Congressman Steil for his partnership on this bipartisan legislation and look forward to getting this crucial bill passed.” 

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