US Failed Refugee Kids From Central America
U.S. authorities failed to conduct proper background checks before releasing undocumented migrant children to guardians, who in some cases exploited them, a bipartisan U.S. Senate investigation found.
Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) opened a Thursday hearing on the findings saying the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) lacked proper procedures to protect undocumented children entering the United States without an accompanying adult.
The Senate investigation was prompted by a case in Portman’s home state of Ohio in which at least six children from Guatemala were forced to work long hours on egg farms in Marion County. Six people have been charged in the case, Portman said.
That could have been prevented had HHS adopted commonsense measures for screening sponsors and checking on the well-being of at-risk children, Portman said.