Trump Admin Pledges $35 Million to Help Trafficking Victims

( On Tuesday, the White House announced a massive $35 million grant designed to help victims of human trafficking. The massive fund will specifically be used to help people find housing and restart their lives after being victims of this modern form of slavery.

The Office for Victims of Crime will be responsible for distributing the grants, as part of the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs. Some 73 different organizations across the United States will assist human trafficking victims in finding transitional housing or be granted housing assistance in various forms.

A senior administration official released more information about the plans to news outlets, describing housing as the “number one most requested service for all crisis cases on the national human trafficking hotline.”

Attorney General William Barr took part in a roundtable discussion with senior White House adviser Ivanka Trump to discuss the plans. They were joined by Heather Fischer, the White House Special Adviser for Human Trafficking, as well as various heads of organizations that help victims of trafficking. You can find the C-Span coverage of that roundtable here.

The same White House official told reporters that the impact of COVID-19 and lockdown measures have made it even harder for human trafficking victims to find shelter.

“We are hearing that many victims were living in quarantine with their traffickers,” the official explained. “The anecdotal stories that we are hearing are horrific.”

President Trump’s administration has long worked to help people who are victims of trafficking. Ivanka Trump has headed up much of the campaign and worked with several organizations in the past, and this is yet another step taken by the Trump administration to help people most in need.

“This is just another example of how the president is going to be empowering victims, empowering survivors, empowering these organizations that are providing this safe and stable environment,” the White House official added.

It follows the executive order signed by the president in January to provide more resources to combat human trafficking, including the appointment of Heather Fischer to help oversee the project.