During the House Homeland Security Committee hearing on September 13, Ballard defended his allegations against the Biden Administration and its current border policies in front of Congress and Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mark Green.
In his testimony before Congress, Ballard drew the connection between child trafficking and the border crisis in the United States. "The lack of border security and inadequate policies are fueling the growth of human trafficking," warned Ballard.
"I have personally seen how ports of entry were responsible for helping rescue a child, catch a sexual predator, and started a chain of events that rescued multiple children from [the traffickers’] abuse. On the other hand, I’ve spoken with survivors who were trafficked by cartels taking advantage of the miles of unprotected U.S. border," Ballard said.
Ballard claims that human traffickers capitalize on the current state of America's border policies. As one of the largest global consumers of child sex abuse material, human traffickers exploit the porous southern border to bring enslaved individuals into the U.S. for the sex industry. (Related: YouTube protects child sex trafficking, pedophiles and groomers by BANNING interviews and videos about “Sound of Freedom” film.)
Furthermore, Green asked Ballard if the policies of the government were making it easier for traffickers to operate and causing human trafficking cases that wouldn't happen otherwise. Ballard confirmed this, and when asked if Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas knows about it, he said: "I do believe he knows that."
Back in June, Green started the investigation against Mayorkas and his failure to address the border crisis, the contribution of the border crisis to the drug cartels, the human and financial costs, and suspected fraudulent activities within the DHS.
However, now that the investigation is in its third stage, Ballard stressed the urgent need to locate the 85,000 missing children and enforce existing border laws. He argues that enforcing border policies and ending human trafficking is the most compassionate policy for children.
In his opening statement in the hearing, Ballard brought up the approximately 85,000 unaccompanied migrant children released by the Biden administration to sponsors within the U.S. since the beginning of fiscal year 2023. Many of these minors have since gone missing and have become prime targets for sexual exploitation and forced labor.
"Regrettably, as a consequence of the current administration's border policies, DHS and HHS have inadvertently become facilitators of child trafficking," claimed Ballard.
Besides urging Congress to locate the missing children, Ballard joined forces with Rep. Chris Smith, a long-time advocate for trafficking victims and author of several anti-trafficking laws, in proposing the "Safeguarding Endangered Children, Unaccompanied and at Risk of Exploitation Act of 2023," commonly referred to as the SECURE Act of 2023.
According to official data from the Customs and Border Protection (CBP), over 345,000 unaccompanied children have crossed the U.S. southern border since 2021. So, the SECURE Act of 2023 aims to hold the federal government including the HHS, DHS and the Federal Bureau of Investigation accountable to submit regular reports on the status of unaccompanied minors in ORR custody since January 2021.
Moreover, the bill demands locating these minors; assessing their risk of trafficking, exploitation and abuse; and ensuring proper vetting of adults in their new homes. Agencies would be fined up to $10 million annually for late submissions.
Most migrant kids come to the U.S. with the name or phone number of unverified sponsors, so the Biden administration policies make Border Patrol, DHS and HHS staff seem like they are helping child traffickers by delivering the kids to them.
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