Human Traffic Watch

Opportunity for Federal Contractors to Lead on Human Trafficking

In Awareness, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking on June 29, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Occasionally allegations arose followed by Congressional inquiries. Then came three years of Congressionally mandated Inspector General reports of high risk contracts at USAID, the State Department and the Defense Department. Some inspections of subcontractors uncovered violations such as withheld passports, wage and hour violations, substandard housing conditions, and recruitment debts — indicators of human trafficking. Notably, the reports found that the contract clause was not in place for subcontractors the majority of the time.

It became clear to the administration and Congress that in the seven years since the regulation went into effect, no contract has been terminated, no contractor has been debarred and no broader implementation or enforcement was behind the regulation. This realization occurred at the same time that senior officials charged with anti-trafficking responsibilities from multiple federal agencies were strategizing around coordinated interagency initiatives. Then came additional pressure as the Wartime Contracting Commission identified human trafficking of third country nationals in Iraq and Afghanistan, finding that prime contractors could have done more to supervise their labor brokers and subcontractors and thereby prevent forced labor.

Source: Huffington Post

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