Migrant Children Sent to Shelters With Histories of Abuse Allegations
Taxpayers have paid more than $1.5 billion in the past four years to private companies operating immigrant youth shelters accused of serious lapses in care, including neglect and sexual and physical abuse, a Reveal investigation has found.
In nearly all cases, the federal government has continued to place migrant children with the companies even after serious allegations were raised and after state inspectors cited shelters with serious deficiencies, government and other records show.
Since 2003, the U.S. Health and Human Services Department has awarded nearly $5 billion in grants through the Office of Refugee Resettlement, mostly to religious and nonprofit organizations in 18 states, to house children who arrive in the country unaccompanied. The program grew quickly in 2014, when around 70,000 children crossed the southern border alone.