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Senators question care of unaccompanied migrant children

WASHINGTON — The Republican and Democratic leaders of the Senate Finance Committee are questioning whether the Trump administration is neglecting its duty to protect unaccompanied immigrant children in its care amid allegations of misconduct at federally funded shelters.

Chairman Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Ron Wyden of Oregon have asked for data on occupancy, incident reporting, sexual abuse prevention and federal and state regulation of children’s shelters.

Migrant children taken into custody are referred to the care of U.S. Health and Human Services. They are placed in shelters run by contractors while they await sponsors.

The number of migrant children crossing the border is rising dramatically, and the lawmakers say they’re worried about whether they are getting proper care following a report that thousands of allegations of sexual abuse and harassment were logged over the past four years.

Colleen Long, The Associated Press