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Special Programs and Initiatives

The Department has launched and supported a number of special projects designed to enhance internal, interagency, and international collaboration and to efficiently marshal resources to better serve trafficking victims and investigate and prosecute their traffickers. 

Special initiatives include:

National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking

The National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking (NAP) focuses on the foundational pillars of the U.S. and global anti-trafficking efforts—prevention, protection, prosecution, and partnership. Throughout, the Biden/Harris Administration integrated its core commitment to gender and racial equity, workers’ rights, fair trade, and support for underserved communities.

The NAP reflects extensive collaboration among federal anti-trafficking experts from across the United States government, and was informed by the expertise of survivors, who generously contributed their insights and wisdom to strengthen the U.S. response to human trafficking.

Task Forces and Working Groups

The most effective way to detect and investigate human trafficking is through a collaborative, multi-agency approach with our federal, state, local, and tribal partners. DOJ supports, leads, or participates in task forces and working groups in every state within the U.S.

  • The Enhanced Collaborative Model Human Trafficking Program is a multi-agency task force initiative funded through the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC). This program supports the development and enhancement of multidisciplinary human trafficking task forces that work to identify victims of sex and labor trafficking and ensure that they have access to a comprehensive array of services. This collaborative approach must include victim and social service providers, law enforcement and prosecution personnel, survivors, and a range of other governmental and non-governmental partners that work together.

  • FBI Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Forces operate within nearly every FBI field office. The ultimate goal of these task forces is to recover victims and investigate traffickers at the state and federal level.

  • The Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Program is a national network of 61 coordinated task forces representing over 400 federal, state and local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies. The program helps state and local law enforcement agencies develop an effective response to technology-facilitated child sexual exploitation and internet crimes against children. This help encompasses forensic and investigative components, training and technical assistance, victim services and community education.

Anti-Trafficking Coordination (ACTeam) Initiative

The Anti-Trafficking Coordination Team (ACTeam) Initiative is a multi-agency initiative launched in 2011 under the leadership of the Civil Rights Division’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit.

The Initiative is a collaborative effort of the Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and Labor and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Through this initiative, interagency teams of federal agents and federal prosecutors are convened in select Districts, designated through a competitive, nationwide, interagency selection process, to develop high-impact human trafficking investigations and prosecutions involving forced labor, sex trafficking of adults, and international sex trafficking. ACTeams coordinate closely with each agency’s specialized anti-trafficking subject matter experts to develop and implement joint strategic enforcement plans and participate in intensive advanced human trafficking training programs. Based on the demonstrated success of the Phase I Pilot ACTeams, all ACTeam partners collaborated to convene six additional Phase II ACTeams in 2015. Phase I ACTeams operated in Atlanta; El Paso, Texas; Kansas City, Missouri; Los Angeles; Memphis, Tennessee; and Miami from 2012-2013. Phase II ACTeams began operating in Portland, Maine; Cleveland; Minneapolis; Newark, New Jersey; Portland, Oregon; and Sacramento, California in 2016.

U.S.-Mexico Bilateral Human Trafficking Enforcement Initiative

Mexico is the country of origin of the largest number of foreign-born human trafficking victims identified in the United States. In response to numerous U.S. federal investigations and prosecutions of trafficking networks operating across the U.S.-Mexico border, the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security launched the U.S.-Mexico Bilateral Human Trafficking Enforcement Initiative in 2009 to enhance collaboration with Mexican law enforcement counterparts in order to more effectively combat transborder trafficking threats. Through this initiative, under the leadership of the Civil Rights Division’s Human Trafficking Prosecution Unit, U.S. and Mexican authorities exchange leads and intelligence to strengthen investigations and prosecutions, restore victims, recover victims’ children, and dismantle trafficking networks through high-impact prosecutions in both the U.S. and Mexico. In addition to coordinating the development of bilateral investigations and prosecutions, DOJ, DHS, and their Mexican law enforcement counterparts engage in extensive exchanges of expertise and case-based mentoring to advance best practices in victim-centered enforcement strategies.

Human Trafficking Task Force e-Guide

This Guide is a resource to support established task forces and provide guidance to agencies that are forming task forces. Its purpose is to assist in the development and day to day operations of an anti-human trafficking task force and to provide fundamental guidance for effective task force operations. The Guide was developed in partnership by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) and Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA).

Updated May 12, 2023