The Current

Advocacy News + Updates

Today, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson released the 2017 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report, a critical tool to shed a light on the crime of human trafficking. This is a unique opportunity to educate your community about this crime by writing a Letter to the Editor. (It's easy—everything you need is below.)

The release of this report is a major milestone in the abolitionist community. It is also a great opportunity to raise the profile of this issue with your elected officials.

Read our take on the TIP Report here.

Use this opportunity to educate your community about the realities of human trafficking—and what can be done to stop it. A Letter to the Editor is typically written in response to an event recently covered in the newspaper. Many papers will cover the launch of the 2017 Trafficking in Persons Report, and this is a great opportunity to respond. Policy makers pay attention to Letters to the Editor—one of the most read sections of the paper—so they are an important advocacy tool. 

You can use or edit the draft text below and follow these simple instructions to submit your own Letter to the Editor today! Let us know if you submit one—and if it’s published!—by emailing

How to Submit Your Letter to the Editor:

1. Look up your local newspaper’s website or call to find the email address for submitting Letters to the Editor.

2. If your paper has covered the TIP Report release or a related topic, start your letter with the following format: “Your article, ‘TITLE, by AUTHOR, on DATE…”

3. Feel free to rely on the draft text below. If you have time, add a line or two to personalize it. Keep the overall length to about 150 words.

4. Include your name, title/affiliation (if relevant), and contact information.

Important Tip: Speed is (almost) everything! Editors receive hundreds of letters every day. Often deciding which ones to print boils down to timing. Responding to a news story the same day it was printed will greatly increase your chance of getting published.

Draft Text

To the editor:

In our politically divided nation, I think there’s one American value we can all agree on: everyone deserves to be free.  On Tuesday, the State Department released the 2017 Trafficking in Persons Report, which ranks 187 countries on their efforts to combat human trafficking, including the U.S. This report sheds light on the hidden crime of modern-day slavery—a crime that holds more than 45 million men, women, and children in bondage. The 19th century abolitionist William Wilberforce said, “You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know.” What does this mean for us? For one thing, our members of Congress should recommit themselves to protecting the integrity of this Report and the U.S. foreign aid programs that help rescue slaves and put traffickers behind bars.

After writing your Letter to the Editor, keep sharing!

Reach out to your members of Congress directly on Twitter.

Access the full 2017 TIP Report on the TIP Office's website here.

This report is a major milestone in the abolitionist community.