Sep 23, 2019 - 10:00am

4 Ways the Private Sector Can Fight Human Trafficking


Senior Manager, Research Policy, Labor, Immigration & Employee Benefits

It’s estimated that nearly 25 million people are exploited in a human trafficking system that generates $150 billion annually worldwide.

The U.S. Department of Transportation Advisory Committee on Human Trafficking released their final report on combating human trafficking in the transportation sector in July. Its recommendations serve as a guide for industry, civil society, states, and the federal government to galvanize support to end modern-day slavery.            

Here are four ways the private sector can help end this insidious practice.

1. Businesses are part of the solution

Businesses play a critical role in preventing trafficking, as well as reemploying its victims. Firms may publish a corporate social responsibility statement, establish a code of conduct, and provide a third-party hotline, enabling workers to report incidents without fear of reprisal.

Also, through partnering with survivor services, second chance employment programs enable individuals to rebuild their lives. Download the business toolkit that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce released in partnership with A21.

2. Think big, act small

Training and awareness programs identify and address weaknesses in the movement of goods and services. Training involves understanding signs of coercion – such as a lack of free will and false travel documents – and suspicious behavior.

Contact local authorities, 911, the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888, or text HELP to 233733 (BEFREE) if you suspect human trafficking is occurring.

For more information on what human trafficking looks like in the U.S. check out A21’s Can You See Me? campaign.

3. Work with partners

Non-governmental organizations can build awareness about human trafficking. For example, UPS has teamed up with Truckers Against Trafficking to train drivers on how to spot signs of sex trafficking. Delta, in conjunction with Polaris, produced a video that is available through the in-flight entertainment system demonstrating how passengers can alert authorities if they see suspicious behavior. Marriott, in partnership with A21 and ECPAT, has released a series of posters to raise awareness within the hospitality industry.

4. Join the movement

Eradicating human trafficking may seem like a daunting goal to achieve. But each small, simple act of compassion can make an impact. Become part of a larger movement by joining efforts to eradicate human trafficking in your city.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, through its Task Force to Eradicate Human Trafficking, is a leader in the fight against sex and labor trafficking. Join the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, September 24, 2019, at the Countering Trafficking Forum to learn more about best practices. 

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About the Author

About the Author

Michael Billet Headshot
Senior Manager, Research Policy, Labor, Immigration & Employee Benefits

Michael Billet, senior manager of policy research at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, keeps members and internal Chamber policy staff abreast of pending labor, immigration, and health care legislation, as well as federal regulatory and subregulatory activities. He is also responsible for planning the Chamber’s annual workplace and community wellness forum.