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Complaint questions $530,000 federal grant to Hookers for Jesus

Whistleblowers at the Department of Justice say other organizations are more worthy of anti-trafficking funds

A whistleblower complaint has been filed with the Department of Justice's Inspector General, questioning $530,000 in anti-human trafficking grant funds awarded to Christian ministry Hookers for Jesus, according to a new report.

What are the details?

1Reuters published an exclusive report on Monday detailing that a Department of Justice employees' union is complaining that two organizations recommended for anti-trafficking funds "by career DOJ officials" were passed over for Hookers for Jesus in Nevada and a South Carolina group called the Lincoln Tubman Foundation.

The whistleblowers say outside contractors recommended "Tier 1" organizations the Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Palm Beach and Chicanos Por La Causa of Phoenix, but those "long-established non-profits" were passed over. Hookers for Jesus and the Lincoln Tubman Foundation were ranked as "Tier 2" by outside reviewers.

The complaint is asking the IG to investigate whether politics played a part in the decision. According to Reuters, "Chicanos Por La Causa has opposed the Trump administration's immigration policies," while "the head of Catholic Charities in Palm Beach has participated in past Democratic National Committees as a delegate or standing committee member."

The $530,000 to Hookers for Jesus will be paid out over three years. Another $549,345 will be paid out over three years to the Lincoln Tubman Foundation, which was "launched by the daughter of a prominent local Republican who supported President Donald Trump as a delegate at the 2016 convention and is close to South Carolina Republican Senator Tim Scott," Reuters' Sarah Lynch writes.

The DOJ's Office of Justice Programs awarded $53 million in taxpayer funds to 77 groups in 2019 for the purpose of assisting human trafficking victims.

 

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