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Democracy, Human Rights, Refugees: Secretary Kerry To Chair Human Trafficking Task Force Meeting

Secretary of State John Kerry will chair the annual meeting of the President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (PITF) at the White House on Friday, May 17, at 9:45 a.m. The annual cabinet-level meeting serves as an opportunity to coordinate government-wide efforts and discuss new initiatives in the struggle to end modern slavery.

This will be the first meeting of the PITF under Secretary Kerry’s tenure as Chair and the fourth of the Obama Administration. Participants will include Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr.; Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius; Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood; Senior Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett; and other agency heads and senior White House officials.

Before the last meeting of the PITF in March 2012, President Obama directed his cabinet to “find ways to strengthen our current work, and to expand on partnerships with civil society and the private sector, so that we can bring more resources to bear in fighting this horrific injustice.”

During this year’s meeting, senior Administration officials will highlight the unprecedented interagency engagement, coordination, and commitment over the last year, from investing in victim services and law enforcement training, to strengthening government procurement protections, to building partnerships with civil society and the private sector.

In addition, during the meeting, Secretary Kerry will present medals to life-long victim advocate Florrie Burke and the global hospitality and travel company Carlson, the two recipients of the first-ever Presidential Award for Extraordinary Efforts to Combat Trafficking in Persons.

This event will be live-streamed on For additional information, contact Mai Shiozaki in the Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons at