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Could Biden’s unaccompanied migrant policy spur child trafficking?

(NewsNation) — Advocacy groups are concerned President Joe Biden’s new asylum policy will inadvertently trigger an increase in unaccompanied minors targeted by sex traffickers.

On Monday alone, the Texas Department of Safety encountered more than 300 juveniles across the southern border, two of which were aged 5 and 7 years old from Honduras. Texas DPS Lt. Chris Olivarez told NewsNation’s Ali Bradley that each boy had a note card attached with an address to Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

𝗨𝗡𝗔𝗖𝗖𝗢𝗠𝗣𝗔𝗡𝗜𝗘𝗗 𝗖𝗛𝗜𝗟𝗗𝗥𝗘𝗡

.@TxDPS Troopers, in the last 24 hours, have encountered 31 unaccompanied children in Maverick County.

6/10: 16 unaccompanied males & 7 unaccompanied females.

6/11: 2 unaccompanied males, ages 5 & 7 years of age from Honduras. Both… pic.twitter.com/AaGognfwT5

— Chris Olivarez (@LtChrisOlivarez) June 11, 2024

El Cajon, California, Mayor Bill Wells says he’s “very fearful” that some of the children on the border could be involved in “the most horrific form of sex trafficking.”

“This is serious stuff. We need to stop this. This is not America,” Wells said.

Officials on the front line say Biden’s executive action aimed at restricting asylum is not acting as a deterrent, and not much has changed.

The long-anticipated presidential proclamation bars migrants from being granted asylum when U.S. officials deem that the southern border is overwhelmed. The order goes into effect when the number of border encounters between ports of entry hits 2,500 per day, according to senior administration officials.

According to the latest data obtained by NewsNation, there has not been a single day since its implementation where Border Patrol has encountered less than 2,500 migrants, exceeding that number by 1,000 nearly every day.

Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia, who last week left the Democratic Party to become an independent, is leading 45 of his Senate Republican colleagues on a resolution to overturn Biden’s administration rule on the care of unaccompanied migrant children.

“We have a crisis at our southern border and its human impacts are absolutely devastating. I have repeatedly called on President Biden to use his executive powers to shut it down and address the cycles of exploitation that illegal immigration empowers. Instead, the Administration is allowing rules like this one to jeopardize the safety of migrant children and trust them in the hands of unvetted sponsors,” Manchin said in a statement.

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