The President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking (PITF) is a cabinet-level entity, created by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA), which consists of some 14 departments and agencies across the federal government that are responsible for coordinating U.S. government-wide efforts to combat trafficking in persons. The PITF meets annually and is chaired by the Secretary of State. Agencies of the PITF have brought together leaders from government, the private sector, advocates and survivors, faith leaders, law enforcement and academia, and have made significant progress following President Obama’s March 2012 call to strengthen federal efforts to combat human trafficking, his September 2012 speech announcing a number of new and strengthened initiatives, and the first-ever White House Forum to Combat Human Trafficking in April 2013. For more information on executive action, click here, here, and here.
At the May 2013 PITF meeting, the White House announced four priority areas identified by the Obama Administration – victim services, rule of law, procurement and supply chains, and public awareness and outreach – that have driven interagency collaboration since that time. Agencies reported progress on each of these priorities at the April 8, 2014 PITF meeting, chaired by Secretary Kerry, who emphasized how the U.S. Government must confront the culture of impunity surrounding human trafficking. This was the second meeting of the PITF under Secretary Kerry’s tenure as Chair and the fifth of the Obama Administration. Participants included Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell; Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez; Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx; Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson; White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough; Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation James Comey, Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development Rajiv Shah, and other agency heads and senior White House officials.
Agencies of the PITF include:
Department of State (DOS)
Department of Defense (DOD)
Department of Justice (DOJ)
Department of the Interior (DOI)
Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Department of Labor (DOL)
Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Department of Transportation (DOT)
Department of Education (ED)
Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
Domestic Policy Council (DPC)
National Security Staff (NSS)
Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI)
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
The TVPA, as amended in 2003, established the Senior Policy Operating Group (SPOG), which consists of senior officials designated as representatives of the PITF members. To ensure a whole-of-government approach, the SPOG brings together federal departments and agencies that address all aspects of human trafficking – enforcement of criminal and labor law, development of victim identification and protection measures, support for innovations in data gathering and research, implementation of education and public awareness activities, formation of enhanced partnerships and research opportunities, and synchronization of strategically linked foreign assistance and diplomatic engagement .
Five standing committees continue to advance substantive areas of the SPOG’s work. They are the Research & Data, Grantmaking, Public Awareness and Outreach, Victims Services, and Procurement and Supply Chain Committees. The SPOG meets quarterly and is chaired by the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.
Additional information and websites for PITF member and invited agencies can be found here.