President Donald Trump’s eldest son on Tuesday, Oct. 20, voiced frustration over a lack of media attention for administration efforts to combat human trafficking.
“This is a disgrace,” Trump Jr. tweeted. “@realDonaldTrump is the first American Politician to address the scourge of human trafficking and fund it and no one has any interest in covering it. I guess they’re too busy running cover for Hollywood.”
This is a disgrace. @realDonaldTrump is the first American Politician to address the scourge of human trafficking and fund it and no one has any interest in covering it.
I guess they’re too busy running cover for Hollywood. https://t.co/w9CLUv4amK
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) October 20, 2020
Trump Jr.’s comments come after the Department of Homeland Security announced Tuesday the opening of the Center for Countering Human Trafficking based in Washington. However, very few members of the media were present and no one had questions during the briefing on the center’s launch.
This is the U.S. government’s first integrated law enforcement operations center, which has been operational since early September and is led by officials from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
“Human trafficking is modern day slavery. There is no other way to say it,” said Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf. “The words are strong because the actions are evil. The forms of exploitation, sex trafficking, forced labor, and domestic servitude that constitute human trafficking are antithetical in every way to the principles of human dignity that Americans hold dear.”
“The launch of this Center for Countering Human Trafficking represents the investment of resources, attention, and time by President Trump to combat and dismantle all forms of human trafficking,” he said.
The agency noted that in fiscal year 2019 alone, “ICE initiated 1,024 human trafficking and forced labor related cases which led to 2,197 criminal arrests. These effective actions resulted in nearly 700 convictions and the rescue of more than 400 victims.”
Proud to announce the opening of the DHS Center for Countering Human Trafficking. One of the many steps the Trump administration has taken to combat and dismantle all forms of human trafficking. https://t.co/EvnoF7lnU4 pic.twitter.com/HXEZBWOfe4
— Acting Secretary Chad Wolf (@DHS_Wolf) October 20, 2020
President Trump has sought to elevate the fight against human trafficking since taking office.
In February, the president signed an executive order expanding the domestic policy office with a new position, which was organized by his daughter and senior adviser Ivanka Trump, to fight the issue. He also announced his administration’s success in authorizing over $400 million to combat human trafficking.
“My administration is putting unprecedented pressure on traffickers at home and abroad,” President Trump said during the event. “We have signed more legislation on human trafficking than any other administration has ever even thought about.”
In August, the Trump administration announced more than $35 million in Justice Department grants to organizations that provide safe housing for victims of human trafficking.