At the recent release of the Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry honored eight TIP Report Heroes from around the world. These dedicated individuals have devoted their lives to ending modern slavery.
The first honoree is Betty Pedraza Lozano from Colombia. The U.S. recognizes her steadfast efforts to restore the rights of adults and children who have been victimized by human trafficking, her commitment to help survivors, and her relentless advocacy for victim care.
Secretary Kerry recognized Gita Miruskina from Latvia for her relentless campaign to enhance the legal understanding of human trafficking in Latvia and throughout the European Union. Ms. Miruskina assists victims and provides legal services to the survivors of modern slavery.
In Madagascar, Norotiana Ramboarivelo Jeannoda launched the National Union of Social Workers to promote human rights. She advocates for improvements in Madagascar’s anti-trafficking laws, and works to support and protect victims.
Catherine Groenendijk-Nabukwasi from South Sudan works hard to care for children who are vulnerable to trafficking and for the right of every girl and boy to an education.
In Uganda, Moses Binoga plays a leadership role in his country’s anti-human trafficking taskforce, works to increase public awareness of trafficking, and demonstrates unwavering support for the victims.
Parosha Chandran, in her work as a barrister in the United Kingdom, has developed and advanced the rule of law on trafficking in the United Kingdom and abroad. Ms. Chandran also provides legal services to victims of modern slavery.
Secretary Kerry congratulated U.S. TIP Report Hero Tony Maddox for founding and leading CNN’s The Freedom Project, and his commitment to raise public awareness and understanding of human trafficking on a global scale, and to advocate on behalf of victims.
And finally, from Iraq, Ameena Hasan was honored for her courageous efforts on behalf of the Yezidi religious minority in northern Iraq, for insisting that the world give heed to the horrors that they face, and for her commitment to helping the victims.
Human trafficking is “a battle against money, it’s a battle against evil,” said Secretary Kerry. And “it is vital for us to be able to push back against this.” That’s why the U.S.is proud to honor a few of the heroes who are on the frontlines of the battle against modern slavery.