Alternate reality of the TIP Report 2020 released by the US Government

If you saw last week’s blog post, and if you downloaded the full report, you’ve no doubt realized there is one heck of a lot to digest in the report.

2020 Trafficking in Persons Report

However, as is often the case, when the government issues a report, there will be those who question and disagree with its comments. While the premise is good, and I’m glad they issued it, here are a couple comments from those who disagree with some of its reporting.

Thompson Reuters Foundation

Luis C.deBaca, formerly the Ambassador to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons under President Obama, argued that the report should be read as “a warning of storm clouds on the horizon.”

The TIP Report, which has been published every year since the passing of the U.S. Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, is widely followed around the world, particularly for its three-tier ranking of countries on their anti-trafficking efforts.

Firstly, he notes that the so-called “3P” approach-by which prevention, protection, and prosecution are considered equally important-is under strain, particularly as a result of weakening victim protection in favor of anti-immigration policies.

This move toward anti-immigration policies, C.debaca notes, has been no clearer than in the U.S., where the Trump administration’s attitudes are such that the government is ultimately hypocritical in its recommendations to other countries.

Read their complete article here:

Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking (ATEST)

As the government continues this 20-year tradition of issuing the report, it turns out that it isn’t following the guidelines issued by the US Congress when it rates itself. The report gives the US a “1” rating — its highest and best rating. Facts don’t agree, however. As ATEST states, the government is woeful in two of three categories.

The 2020 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report, released Thursday, marks the 20th time the U.S. State Department has ranked how well the world’s governments are responding to forced labor and human trafficking and the 10th year the U.S. government has ranked itself.

Under a new statutory provision of TVPRA of 2018 it is the first time the report was required to follow stricter procedures mandated by Congress to rank countries based on substantive results and progress, rather than rhetoric by public officials or promises of future action.

The Tier 1 ranking for the United States in the 2020 report does not comply with the new standards. The U.S. does not fully meet the minimum standards established by Congress in the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act to merit Tier 1 status, the highest possible ranking. The report itself indicates the U.S. falls short in two of the three key areas of tier ranking evaluation:

Prosecution: The report indicates that in the U.S. “the number of trafficking prosecutions decreased for the second year in a row, and the number of convictions decreased.”
Protection: The report indicates that the U.S. government “has decreased protection efforts” for trafficking victims and survivors.

Read their full article here:

What do you think of the United States' self-ranking? Leave your comments below.

Originally published at on July 7, 2020.




Writer & photographer in print & online. Proud husband, father & grandfather. Engaged volunteer with Red Cross, human trafficking prevention & social concerns.

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Doug Bardwell

Doug Bardwell

Writer & photographer in print & online. Proud husband, father & grandfather. Engaged volunteer with Red Cross, human trafficking prevention & social concerns.

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