Immigrant Minors In U.S. Custody Have Reported Thousands Of Allegations Of Sexual Abuse

Immigrant Minors Separated From Parents Have Reported Thousands Of Allegations Of Sexual Abuse

Irivne Immigration Rally
Image via Kevin Sullivan/Orange County Register via Getty Images

Over 100 of the sex abuse allegations made by immigrant minors involved adult staff members

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released information on thousands of reports of sexually assaulted immigrant minors that have been filed over the last four years – and that these numbers had risen to an all-time high by the middle of 2018.

According to Axios, the Office of Refugee Resettlement received 4,556 complaints while the Department of Justice (DOJ) received 1,303 complaints, all between October 2014 to July 2018. The most recent numbers are not yet available.

An estimated 178 cases of assault listed an adult staff member as the perpetrator, while hundreds more listed assaults between minors. A frightening 514 cases of sex abuse were reported in the second quarter of 2018 alone.

These shocking numbers were released on Tuesday morning by Florida Democratic Rep. Ted Deutch, during a House hearing regarding Trump’s “Zero tolerance” policy that led to thousands of immigrant children being separated from their parents and placed in detention camps across the country.

After Deutch presented the numbers, he added another statistic: “This works out on average to one sexual assault by HHS staff on unaccompanied minor per week,” he said.

He also told Axios:

“This behavior — it’s despicable, it’s disgusting, and this is just the start of questions that HHS is going to have to answer about how they handle these and what’s happening in these facilities.”

According to CNN, incidents included, “staff members who were accused of having relationships with minors, unwanted sexual touching and showing the minors pornographic videos.”