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Members of the U.S. Advisory Council on Human Trafficking (Photo Credit – ICF)

Survivor Leadership

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Survivor engagement is a central tenet of the federal government’s approach to establishing effective anti-trafficking strategies that address prosecution, protection, and prevention. Survivors’ voices are important in shaping policy, and the federal government is committed to supporting leadership development of survivor leaders. The following are examples of opportunities for individuals with lived experience of human trafficking to engage in current federal anti-trafficking efforts.

United States Advisory Council on Human Trafficking

The United States Advisory Council on Human Trafficking, established by the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act  of 2015 (Pub. L. No. 114-22), provides a formal platform for trafficking survivors to advise and make recommendations on federal anti-trafficking policies to the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. Each member is a survivor of human trafficking, and together they represent a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences. Council members are appointed by the President for two-year terms.

The Council has released the following annual reports with key findings and recommendations for the federal government to strengthen policies and programs:

Human Trafficking Leadership Academy

HHS’s National Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance Center operates the Human Trafficking Leadership Academy (HTLA) , which is committed to developing and expanding survivor-informed services while also providing leadership development opportunities to survivor leaders and allied professionals. HTLA fellows work collaboratively to provide substantive recommendations to inform research, policies, and programs that improve awareness, understanding, and assistance to survivors of human trafficking or those at risk of human trafficking. To date, five classes of the HTLA fellows have provided recommendations on the following topics:

Information about the application process is available on the HTLA  webpage.

Training & Technical Assistance Opportunities

HHS’s National Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance Center (NHTTAC)

The National Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance Center (NHTTAC)  delivers training and technical assistance on behalf of HHS’s Office on Trafficking in Persons (OTIP) to inform and enhance the public health response to human trafficking. Survivor leaders provide an array of expertise and experience that informs the training and technical assistance NHTTAC delivers. Additionally, NHTTAC provides survivor leaders with professional development, leadership training, and networking through scholarships, fellowships, information, and referrals. For more information about training and technical assistance opportunities, please contact info@nhttac.org.

DOJ’s Office for Victims of Crime Training and Technical Assistance Center

The Office for Victims of Crime Training & Technical Assistance Center (OVC TTAC)  provides practitioner-driven, evidence-based training and technical assistance that is responsive to the particular needs of victim service providers, their communities, and the victims they serve, including a specific focus on human trafficking. The types of training and technical assistance include tailored, onsite consultations and trainings in response to specific requests, professional development scholarships, crime victim scholarships, and a number of online resources. For more information about training and technical assistance opportunities, please contact humantrafficking@ovcttac.org.

Human Trafficking Expert Consultant Network

The Department of State’s Human Trafficking Expert Consultant Network (the Network) strives to incorporate survivor input into the Department’s anti-trafficking policies and programs. Network consultants advise the Department on various matters ranging from consulting on multilateral anti-trafficking efforts to grantmaking. Consultants also deliver trauma training to Department staff and the interagency and drafted contributions on topics of special interest for the 2020 Trafficking in Persons Report on the “Intersection of Human Trafficking and Addiction” and “Trauma Bonding.” Please email Info@HTConsultantNetwork.org for more information.

U.S. Department of State

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