Did you miss Hangouts At State with Ambassador CdeBaca, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, on “Human Trafficking - How Can We End Modern Slavery?” Check it out on YouTube

Google+ Hangout on Human Trafficking

Join Ambassador Luis Cdebaca for a Google+ Hangout on “Human Trafficking - How Can We End Modern Slavery” on July 18, 2013 at 1:00 PM EDT. Submit your questions now on Google+ and follow the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #ModernSlavery. You can watch the hangout live on Thursday on Google+ and YouTube.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry delivers a video message on the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. A text transcript can be found at http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2013/04/207232.htm

Partnerships To Combat Modern Slavery

A placard of a child sits on a table during a conference on modern slavery, Oct. 31, 2011 in Atlanta. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Ambassador Luis CdeBaca serves as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of State and directs the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.

Yesterday, the White House hosted a Forum to Combat Human Trafficking to highlight the Obama Administration’s accomplishments in the fight against modern slavery, demonstrate its ongoing and steadfast commitment to this issue, and engage the stakeholder community. Director of the Domestic Policy Council Cecilia Muñoz; Senior Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett; and Assistant to the President, Chief of Staff to the First Lady, and Executive Director of the Council on Women and Girls… more »

The Fight Against Modern Slavery: Fulfilling the Promise of the Emancipation Proclamation

This Feb. 18, 2005 file photo shows the original Emancipation Proclamation on display in the Rotunda of the National Archives in Washington. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Ambassador Luis CdeBaca serves as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of State and directs the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.

On New Year’s Day, our nation celebrated the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation. President Obama commemorated the anniversary with two Presidential Proclamations: one that celebrates the Emancipation Proclamation and reaffirms the timeless principles it upheld, and a second that declares January 2013 as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month and calls on all Americans to recognize the vital role we can play in ending all forms… more »

Ten Years Later: Remembering Senator Paul Wellstone

U.S. Senator Paul Wellstone, D-Minn., speaks during an interview in Manchester, N.H., April 24, 1998. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Ambassador-at-Large Luis Cdebaca serves as Senior Advisor to the Secretary of State and directs the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.

Ten years ago, in the federal courthouse in Honolulu, I was among a small group of civil rights prosecutors who had just started trial in the largest slavery prosecution in U.S. history, in which over 300 Chinese and Vietnamese workers had been enslaved in a garment factory in American Samoa. But on the third day of trial, a hammer blow fell on our prosecution team: Paul and Sheila Wellstone’s airplane had gone down in northeastern Minnesota, taking their lives as well as that of their daughter and several aides. Senator Wellstone was not just the conscience of the Senate, a voice for the dispossessed and an inspiration to so many, he was the sponsor of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000. He was not only a fellow Midwestern wrestler, but had been… more »

Combating Modern Slavery 150 Years After the Emancipation Proclamation

Child laborers carry stones, Gauhati, India, June 11, 2008. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Luis CdeBaca serves as the Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.

On September 22, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, announcing his intention to emancipate all the slaves in the Confederate states that did not return to the Union within 100 days. On January 1, 1863, he declared free the 3.1 million slaves in those states.

Today, we celebrate the 150th anniversary of that date in 1862, which heralded the victory of freedom and justice, and our country’s ongoing commitment to those values. Yet, at the same time, as many as 27 million men, women, and children around the world live in a state of modern slavery — what we also refer to as trafficking in persons. So as we mark this occasion, we reflect not just on the tragedy of the past, but on the ongoing responsibility to fight for freedom. To honor the memories of those who lived and died in bondage, and those who fought and died so that… more »

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton poses for a photo with the 2012 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report  Heroes, individuals around the world who have devoted their lives to the fight against human trafficking, at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., on June 19, 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton poses for a photo with the 2012 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report  Heroes, individuals around the world who have devoted their lives to the fight against human trafficking, at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., on June 19, 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

U.S.Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Under Secretary Maria Otero, Ambassador Luis CdeBaca, and Vincent Paraiso deliver remarks during the release of the 2012 Trafficking in Persons Report at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C on June 19, 2012. [Go to http://video.state.gov for more video and text transcript.]

National Freedom Day and the Fight Against Modern Slavery

U.S. President Harry Truman signs senate joint resolution 37 requesting the president to proclaim on, February 1 1948,

About the Author: Luis CdeBaca serves as the Ambassador at Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.

Seventy years ago, a group of men and women organized at Independence Hall in Philadelphia to lay a wreath before the Liberty Bell to commemorate the date — February 1, 1865 — that President Abraham Lincoln signed the 13th Amendment, banning slavery in the United States. The plan to set aside February 1 was led by Richard Wright, who was born into slavery in 1855. After Emancipation, Wright went to college, joined the army, and late in life became the first African-American in the United States to own a bank. A year after Wright died, in 1948, Wright’s legacy was written into law when Congress passed a bill making February 1 National Freedom Day. Harry S. Truman was the first President to declare National Freedom Day, a tradition upheld every year since and reaffirmed again today by President Barack Obama.

As we mark that moment, when Lincoln sent to the states a… more »