Lawmakers have warned that the growing number of unaccompanied minors crossing the border illegally could be targets for human traffickers. The Biden administration has a solution: racial equity.
Next month, the Biden administration will hold a public hearing meant to "develop an implementation plan for integrating racial equity into U.S. government anti-trafficking efforts," according to a notice posted by the State Department in March. The plan seeks to combat human trafficking "using a racial justice and equity lens."
The May 3 virtual meeting will address several questions, such as "What does racial equity mean in the context of human trafficking?" and "What does a racially equitable anti-trafficking framework look like, particularly for law enforcement and prosecution responses, victim assistance efforts, and prevention strategies?"
Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas), who recently grilled Homeland Security secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on the increase in human trafficking at the border, said the Biden administration's focus on woke priorities is exacerbating a crisis created by its lax border enforcement policies.
"The Biden administration is responsible for the most prolific human trafficking network in modern times," Cruz, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told the Washington Free Beacon. "They've enabled cartels to carry out atrocities against migrants in record numbers. Now, rather than focusing on putting an end to this crisis, they're spending federal resources gathering diversity and inclusion testimony. It's an asinine approach to a very serious crisis they've created."
The State Department meeting comes as critics accuse the Biden administration of pursuing woke cultural priorities championed by the far left and ignoring issues important to regular Americans. As the State Department works to create a "racially equitable anti-trafficking framework," the number of unaccompanied minor children illegally entering the country along the southern border has skyrocketed. Customs and Border Protection says it encountered a record 152,000 unaccompanied minors in 2022 and 324,000 in the last 26 months. Unaccompanied minors are the most likely to be sold into slavery and sexually abused, with one recent study estimating that 60 percent of unaccompanied minor alien children "are caught by cartels and exploited through child pornography and drug trafficking."
The State Department is asking a range of nonprofit advocacy groups to help it develop the "tools to apply a racial equity lens to federal government anti-trafficking efforts," according to the notice. The effort is the result of two recent Biden administration executive orders instructing the entire federal government to spearhead various Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion programs. These orders have been implemented government-wide, including in the military, where service members are being instructed on proper gender pronouns and even when to offer their colleagues sex-reassignment surgeries.
The State Department notice says that racism in America is hampering efforts to combat human trafficking.
"The implementation plan will highlight the importance of an intersectional approach, as racism often compounds with other forms of discrimination to affect individuals' vulnerability to human trafficking," the notice states.
The State Department declined to comment when asked about the issue.
Cruz in his public clash with Mayorkas during a Senate oversight hearing last month said the Biden administration has "turned these cartels into multibillion-dollar criminal organizations."
"The deaths, the children assaulted, the children raped, they are at your feet, and if you had integrity, you would resign," Cruz said to Mayorkas.