Jan 31, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump to create new White House position to combat human trafficking

Photo: Brittany Greeson/Getty Images

President Trump plans to expand the White House Domestic Policy Council by appointing an official to focus exclusively on combating human trafficking, AP reports.

Why it matters: There were more than 4,500 cases of reported human trafficking in 2019, according to the National Human Trafficking Hotline. However, the Trump administration previously cut back on prosecutions of these crimes and assistance to victims.

The state of play: A candidate has yet to be identified for the new post, which is to be created by executive order Friday.

  • During a recent visit to Atlanta, Ivanka Trump said trafficking is "modern-day slavery."
  • The new official will have to create a website providing services and information for local law enforcement, victims, advocates and others.
  • The administration will also propose legislation to help law enforcement track the distribution of child sexual abuse material on the internet in real time.

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Watchdog files Hatch Act complaint against Jared Kushner

Jared Kushner. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

An ethics watchdog has filed a Hatch Act complaint against Jared Kushner, saying the president's senior advisor advocated for the 2020 Trump campaign while appearing in his government capacity on CNN last Sunday.

The big picture: In the interview, Kushner discussed Trump's reelection efforts and weighed in on whether the impeachment proceedings have benefited the president politically. The Hatch Act restricts federal employees from engaging in partisan political activity.

Epstein survivor Courtney Wild to be a guest at State of the Union

Courtney Wild speaks at a July 2019 news conference in New York City. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Courtney Wild, who's spoken publicly of being molested by Jeffrey Epstein at age 14, will attend the State of the Union Tuesday as the guest of Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) a sponsor of a bill named for the survivor.

Why it matters: The Courtney Wild Crime Victims' Rights Reform Act of 2019 seeks to strengthen victims' rights and prevent prosecutors from reaching sweetheart plea deals like the 2008 one that saw Epstein avoid federal sex trafficking charges. Speier said Wild's presence will "send a clear message that women are done with being treated as second class citizens in our own country."

Go deeper: What we know: The life and death of Jeffrey Epstein

ICE is fingerprinting teen migrants

ICE agents taking an immigrant's fingerprints in 2017. Photo: Brian van der Brug/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials have been tasked since January with fingerprinting teens in child migrant shelters who entered the country without their parents, BuzzFeed News reported and Axios confirmed.

Why it matters: ICE says the data collection is for the children's protection, but it also comes as immigration agencies have ramped up their collection of migrant biometric data.