Democratic senator says migrant children are being exploited by companies
Conservatives have long criticized President Joe Biden for allowing a wave of illegal migration across America's southern border. However, even one top Democrat recently admitted that it's causing children to be abused.
According to Breitbart, Colorado Sen. John Hickenlooper told MSNBC host José Díaz-Balart on Thursday that there has been "a lot of confusion" among authorities about where migrant children are ending up.
Federal government losing track of children
"[W]e are going to reach out to HHS and look at how do we do a better job of maintaining contact and checking in periodically with these sponsor families," Breitbart quoted Hickenlooper as saying.
"I mean, this is an issue where we have, obviously, a lot of confusion and there’s been massive change over the last couple of years coming out of the pandemic, coming out of all the problems we’ve had at the border, and so many of these problems reflect a high volume of kids coming in, unaccompanied," the senator continued.
"But that makes them vulnerable. And I think we all have a responsibility to step up and say, alright, what is that ecosystem, what’s the chain of command by which we can make sure these kids are protected?" he asked.
"And while they go through the adjudication process, while their refugee status or their opportunity to stay permanently in this country — as that goes through the formal paperwork, how do we make sure they’re not being exploited and abused?" Hickenlooper added.
Kid allegedly being exploited by corporations
On Tuesday, Hickenlooper's office put out a press release which referenced "recent reports that migrant children are being exploited for their labor."
It added that Hickenlooper and California Democratic Sen. Alex Padilla "sent a letter to the CEOs of 27 major companies accused of wrongdoing, demanding they take immediate steps to stop the ill-treatment of children."
The letter included allegations that migrant children have "been working at their facilities in unsafe occupations, in hazardous conditions, and other unlawful circumstances."
"According to the Department of Labor, NBC News, and the New York Times, migrant children have been working at your facilities in hazardous conditions, engaged in work that is not suitable for their age group, and working hours well beyond what is permitted by law," the pair wrote.
The number of unaccompanied minors has exploded since Biden took office
"We ask that you carefully examine your hiring procedures, workplace safety, and compliance with wage and hour laws as they apply to minors," Hickenlooper and Padilla stressed.
"Your staff must be trained, and retrained if necessary, on federal and state child labor laws to ensure that children are not being placed in harm’s way, and employees must have the opportunity to report unfair labor practices without risk or fear of retaliation," they insisted.
Numbers published by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) revealed that the flow of unaccompanied minors entering the United States exploded after former President Donald Trump left office.
Fox News reported in March that DHS figures show over 345,000 had arrived up to that point since fiscal year 2021.