On human rights, the United States must be a beacon. America is strongest when our policies and actions match our values.More
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The continued detention of prisoners without charge at Guantanamo undermines our national security and is a recruiting bonanza for our enemies. We’ve joined forces with a group of retired generals and admirals; together we are pressing President Obama to deliver on his promise to shut down the prison. Our Blueprint on How to Close Guantanamo is a detailed roadmap for how to get there. Photo: AP.

150 years after the United States ratified the 13th Amendment officially abolishing slavery, human trafficking is the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world, entrapping an estimated 21 million victims. Victims of modern-day slavery can be found in virtually every state and city in America, working in construction, manufacturing, agriculture, as domestic workers, in brothels and in many other industries. We are attacking the scourge of modern-day slavery by bringing together U.S. government and other leaders to put the criminals who profit $150 billion a year from trafficking out of business.

Throughout the Caribbean, LGBT people face violence and discrimination due to their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. Many countries maintain colonial-era laws criminalizing homosexuality that breed a permissive environment for human rights violations against LGBT people. The United States should use its long history of partnership with the region to encourage Caribbean governments to support the rights of the LGBT community. Trade and tourism are prime avenues for engagement. Human Rights First is working with local activists to build momentum for change.

There’s no debate on torture. It’s illegal. Legislation solidified the ban on torture, specifically outlawing waterboarding and inhumane techniques. It passed Congress in 2015 with overwhelming bipartisan support. It’s ineffective. Retired interrogation and intelligence professionals, along with respected generals and admirals, know from experience that torture does not produce reliable, actionable intelligence. And it’s just plain wrong. Torture violates the core principles of our Constitution and the rule of law.