Unfortunately, the concerns raised are based on a misunderstanding of the mission of the National Human Trafficking Hotline. The Trafficking Hotline is not primarily a law enforcement tip line but rather is authorized by Congress and funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service to “assist victims of severe forms of trafficking in persons in communicating with service providers.”
To serve this mission, the Trafficking Hotline must have the trust of victims and survivors we serve. To that end, the Trafficking Hotline does not report their situations to law enforcement without their consent. Instead, the Trafficking Hotline works with victims to determine what they need to begin to break free and rebuild their lives. This is important because traffickers take consent, choice, and freedom away from victims. To effectively support survivors is to return to them control over their own lives and choices. When and if victims and survivors choose to involve law enforcement, the Trafficking Hotline supports the process every step of the way.
The Trafficking Hotline reports all situations involving children to appropriate authorities as directed by state and federal protocols. The Trafficking Hotline will also report situations where immediate and escalating violence can be heard or observed.
Polaris is deeply committed to ensuring traffickers are held accountable and are stopped from being able to continue to victimize people. We actively partner with hundreds of law enforcement agencies all over the country to ensure countless traffickers are arrested and justice is served.
We look forward to continuing to engage our law enforcement partners, including the attorneys general’s offices, as well as thousands of social service agencies, survivor leaders, and community leaders who we partner with, to ensure the Trafficking Hotline fulfills its mission to provide a safe and trusted place for victims and survivors to get connected to help.