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Hidden in Plain Sight: Labor Trafficking in America

report from the Urban Institute and Northeastern University documents labor trafficking abuses occurring in major US industries: agriculture, domestic work, hotels, restaurants, and construction. The report finds that loopholes in labor and immigration laws and gaps in local and federal law enforcement are part of the problem. The panel of experts discussed labor trafficking in America and next steps for policy and practice. 

For inquiries regarding this event, please contact Daphne Bond-Godfrey at [email protected].

Event Materials



  • Sarah Rosen Wartell, president, Urban Institute


  • John Picarelli, director of the Crime, Violence, and Victimization Research Division and program manager for transnational issues, National Institute of Justice, US Department of Justice

Report Findings

  • Amy Farrell, associate professor, School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Northeastern University, coprincipal investigator of Understanding the Organization, Operation, and Victimization Process of Labor Trafficking in the United States

Panel Discussion

  • Colleen Owens, research associate and coprincipal investigator, Urban Institute
  • Florrie Burke, consultant and chair emeritus, Freedom Network 
  • Shonnie Ball, acting senior coordinator for public engagement, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, US Department of State 
  • Laura Fortman,  deputy administrator, Wage and Hour Division, US Department of Labor
  • Meredith Dank, senior research associate and coprincipal investigator, Urban Institute (moderator)


Date & Time Thursday, October 30, 2014
2100 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20037
, DC , 20037
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  • Urban Institute Associate
  • Consultant