Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2011

Abstract

Human traffickers prey on the vulnerabilities of other people. Poverty, lack of education, and language barriers are keys that human traffickers use to successfully exploit others. For foreign national children who have been trafficked in the United States, these same vulnerabilities are often ignored by the immigration system. From its inception, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) has been touted as a tool to combat grave human rights violations that affect children. In fact, the TVPA's legislative history is rife with stories, statistics, and anecdotes involving children-often young girls. The TVPA has always recognized the failure of a one-size-fits-all approach for victims of trafficking, and that the needs of child victims can be quite different than the needs of adult victims. In light of this reality, a number of TVPA provisions make special exceptions or accommodations for children. On paper, these accommodations may seem satisfactory. Unfortunately, for trafficked children within the immigration system, like the ones described below, the reality can be quite different.


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