The U.S. Government is trying to stop a very serious problemthe problem of human trafficking. We are giving you this brochure because we want you to know that everybody in the United States has rights and is protected by our laws. Freedom is one of the most important rights. In the United States, no oneno matter how powerful that person may be in the United States or in another countryhas the right to force other people to work.
NO ONE CAN:
force you to work against your will;
collect a debt by using threats or forcing you to work to pay the debt;
force you to work using threats to harm you or your family;
force or pressure you into prostitution or to do other sexual acts;
use you for any kind of sex work if you are under 18;
take away your passport, birth certificate, or identification card to control you or your movements.
If any of these things has happened to you, you might be a victim of a serious crime. You are not alone. Please talk to us. We can help you.
We want you to be safe. Remember, you are now away from the people who hurt you, and we can help you plan how to be safe. We may also be able to help your family if they are in danger from the traffickers.
WE CAN HELP YOU FIND:
emergency medical assistance;
emergency food and shelter;
counseling and legal assistance.
Every federal law enforcement agency has someone who can help victims and answer questions. If you are a victim, this person can tell you about community agencies and programs that can help you. The name and phone number of the person in your area is on the back of this brochure.
WE WANT TO STOP PEOPLE WHO HURT YOU...
We will see if criminal charges can be brought against those who hurt you, but we need your help. We would like to talk to you about what happened to you. It is important to tell us the truth. If you are afraid of someone, please tell us. We will try to protect you and your family. And we won't give your name or the names of your family members to the public.
Some people may tell you not to trust immigration agents, other federal agents or the police. Don't believe them. The people who say these things want you to be afraid of the people who can help you the most. Please call us. We can help you.
There may be ways for you to stay in the United States while we investigate your case, even if you don't have the proper papers. If you are a victim of trafficking in persons, the Immigration and Naturalization Service may let you stay in the United States. You may also get a work permit.
STAYING IN THE UNITED STATES OR GOING HOME...
You also may be able to stay in the United States for a longer time depending upon your situation. Some of the ways you may be able to stay in the United States include:
the T visa, a program for certain trafficking in persons victims;
the U visa, a program for certain crime victims who have been hurt and are working with law enforcement officials;
the S visa, a program for certain people helping in criminal investigations;
asylum, a program for certain people who have experienced or are facing persecution in their home country.
There may be other immigration programs that are right for you. It is important to talk with an immigration lawyer or community organization that can advise you about your choices. A victim specialist may be able to help you find a free or low-cost lawyer.
If you want to go back to your home country, please talk to us, or contact your victim specialist, a community organization or your own lawyer.
FOR HELP, CALL 1-888-428-7581 (VOICE AND TTY)
WHAT TO EXPECT NOW...
Sometimes it takes a year or two to finish a case. During this time, it is important to keep in contact with the people or government agencies listed on the right.
ASSISTANCE IS AVAILABLE FOR VICTIMS OF TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS AND FORCED LABOR 2002
IMPORTANT PHONE NUMBERS:
FBI*, INS**, or DSS*** agent, officer or victim specialist:
U.S. Attorney Victim-Witness Coordinator:
State Crime Victim Compensation Program:
*Federal Bureau of Investigation
**Immigration and Naturalization Service
***Diplomatic Security Service
If you know of other people who need this kind of help, call free of charge:
1-888-428-7581 (Voice and TTY)
U.S. Department of Justice:
U.S. Department of State: