Recent press accounts have brought into devastating relief U.S. companies’ labor exploitation of unaccompanied children—a uniquely vulnerable group of migrant children who have fled to the United States without parents or legal guardians. Amid ongoing discussion among media, policymakers, and the public regarding these abuses, contributing factors, and appropriate policy responses, KIND provides insight on approaching and understanding this issue.
- Fact: U.S. companies are subjecting unaccompanied children to labor exploitation.
- Fact: Forces contributing to labor exploitation of unaccompanied children are complex and intersectional.
- Fact: Robust implementation of the bipartisan Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (TVPRA) is essential to preventing and mitigating labor abuses and trafficking of unaccompanied children.
- Fact: ORR thoroughly screens potential sponsors of unaccompanied children.
- Fact: When children and/or sponsors do not answer the phone during ORR follow-up calls after children’s release from ORR custody, it does not mean the children in sponsors’ care are “missing.”
- Fact: Access to lawful, safe, and appropriate work can help prevent subjection to labor exploitation.
- Fact: Many unaccompanied children have fled severe dangers in their countries of origin.