Thursday, September 20, 2018

1,488 migrant children missing in U.S.

Twice in less than a year, the federal government has lost track of nearly 1,500 migrant children after placing them in the homes of sponso,rs across the country, federal officials have acknowledged. 1,488 migrant children The health and human services department recently told Senate staffers that case managers could not find 1,488 children after they made follow-up calls to check on their safety from April through June.

That number represents about 13 per cent of all unaccompanied children the administration moved out of shelters and foster homes during that time. The agency first disclosed that it had lost track of 1,475 children late last year, as it came under fire at a Senate hearing in April.

Lawmakers had asked HHS officials how they had strengthened child protection policies since it came to light that the agency previously had rolled back safeguards meant to keep Central American children from ending up in the hands of human traffickers. “The fact that HHS, which placed these unaccompanied minors with sponsors, doesn’t know the whereabouts of nearly 1,500 of them is very troubling,” Republican Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio, the panel’s chair, said Wednesday. “Many of these kids are vulnerable to trafficking and abuse, and to not take responsibility for their safety is unacceptable.”

HHS spokeswoman Caitlin Oakley disputed the notion that the children were “lost”. “Their sponsors, who are usually parents or family members and in all cases have been vetted for criminality and ability to provide for them, simply did not respond or could not be reached when this voluntary call was made,” she said in a statement.

Since October 2014, the federal government has placed more than 150,000 unaccompanied minors with parents or other adult sponsors who are expected to care for the children and help them attend school while they seek legal status in immigration court.

On Tuesday, members of a Senate subcommittee introduced bipartisan legislation aimed at requiring the agency to take responsibility for the care of migrant children, even when they are no longer in its custody. An Associated Press investigation found in 2016 that more than two dozen unaccompanied children had been sent to homes where they were sexually assaulted, starved or forced to work for little or no pay.

At the time, many adult sponsors didn’t undergo thorough background checks, government officials rarely visited homes and in some cases had no idea that sponsors had taken in several unrelated children, a possible sign of human trafficking. Since then, HHS has boosted outreach to at-risk children deemed to need extra protection, and last year offered post-placement services to about one-third of unaccompanied minors, according to the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.

But advocates say it is hard to know how many minors may be in dangerous conditions, in part because some disappear before social workers can follow up with them and never show up in court. From April to June, HHS called 11,254 children the agency had placed with sponsors, and found 25 of the children had run away, and 1,488 could not be located, according to the data provided to the subcommittee.

Portman began investigating after a case in his home state of Ohio in which eight Guatemalan teens were placed with human traffickers and forced to work on egg farms under threats of death. Six people have been convicted and sentenced to federal prison for their participation in the trafficking scheme that began in 2013. The legislation comes as the Trump administration faces litigation over its family separation policy at the US-Mexican border, which while it was in effect sent hundreds more children into the HHS system of shelters and foster care. Some of those children since have been reunited with their families, while others have been placed with sponsors. Oakley did not respond to questions regarding whether any of the children who the agency lost track of had been separated from their families before they were sent to live with sponsors.

The legislation is aimed at ensuring HHS does more to prevent abuse, runs background checks before placing children with sponsors, and notifies state governments before sending children to those states, the bill’s sponsors said. “The already challenging reality migrant children face is being made even more difficult and, too often, more dangerous,” said the panel’s top Democrat, Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware. “This simply doesn’t have to be the case and, as this legislation demonstrates, the solutions don’t have to be partisan.”

Thursday, September 13, 2018


Blue Campaign Bulletin Header

September 2018

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In this issue: 

Power of Partners

As students head back to school, many organizations and educational institutions are making human trafficking awareness part of staff training, educational programs, and online resources. Educators are in a unique position to spot potential indicators of human trafficking. Additionally, students can help by educating their peers about the crime and what it looks like.
Blue Campaign has worked with several higher-learning institutions, including Columbia University, University of North Carolina, and Middle Tennessee State University, to include our human trafficking resources on their websites and as part of campus events. We have also developed a toolkit that students can use to raise awareness about human trafficking on campuses. The student advocate toolkit includes explanations of the different types of trafficking, indicators of the crime, and awareness posters to display in common areas.
For more information on Blue Campaign and ways you can work with us, visit our website

What’s New with Blue?

Upcoming Event: Facebook Live on September 20th

Tune in to our Facebook page on Thursday, September 20 at 1 p.m. EDT for a live panel discussion about human trafficking and Native communities. Panelists from the Tribal Gaming Protection Network, National Indian Gaming Commission, and the National Center for Victims of Crime will discuss why it is important to reach Native communities with information about the crime and what their organizations are doing to combat it. Let us know you plan to join us by checking “going” on the Facebook Live event page:
Human Trafficking & Native American communities Facebook Live promotion photo

In Case You Missed It: Twitter Chats

We recently hosted two #AskBlue Twitter chats. One focused on labor trafficking and included Polaris, U.S. Department of Labor, and Ayuda. The other looked at human trafficking on college campuses and included the McCain Institute for International Leadership, All Walks Project at Arizona State University, Berkeley Anti-Trafficking Coalition at UC Berkeley, UNICEF at UVA, and the Institute for Sport and Social Justice. If you were not able to participate – check out the conversations and follow @DHSBlueCampaign on Twitter so you don’t miss the next one!
View the full labor trafficking Twitter chat here and the human trafficking on college campuses chat here.

New Transportation Industry Toolkit Now Available

New Transportation Toolkit image
Blue Campaign has a new toolkit for the transportation industry. It includes specific human trafficking indicators likely to be observed by aviation, rail, trucking, and maritime sector employees. Transportation organizations and companies can use the toolkit to educate staff to better recognize and report human trafficking. It can be downloaded here.

News You Can Use

'WI, We Need to Talk' Campaign Raises Awareness of Youth Sex Trafficking (WGBA)The Wisconsin Department of Children and Families launched a new statewide campaign to raise awareness of human trafficking.
Hogan Announces Funds, Efforts to Address Human Trafficking (Washington Post)Maryland Governor Larry Hogan signed an executive order to crack down on human trafficking in the state. The order created a statewide anti-human trafficking director and the governor announced the allocation of $5 million to provide trafficking victims with support services.
Delaware Hospitals' Newest Diagnosis: Human Trafficking (Delaware Online)Delaware hospitals are working together to create universal screening questions to help doctors and nurses better identify victims of human trafficking.
City Wants Hotels and Motels to Increase Reporting About Human Trafficking in Houston(Houston Public Media) The City of Houston is working with local hotels and motels to increase reporting of human trafficking.

Social Media Shareables

Each month we will share Twitter and Facebook content you can distribute on your own channels to raise awareness of human trafficking in your communities. Remember to tag us on Facebook using @BlueCampaign and on Twitter with @DHSBlueCampaign.


  • ICYMI: @DHSBlueCampaign recently hosted an #AskBlue Twitter chat on labor trafficking. Check it out here:
  • Did you follow @DHSBlueCampaign’s Twitter chat about #humantrafficking on college campuses? See the full conversation here:
  • Tune in for @DHSBlueCampaign’s Facebook Live on September 20 at 1 p.m. EDT to learn more about combatting #humantrafficking in Native communities:
  • @DHSBlueCampaign is hosting a Facebook Live on September 20 at 1 p.m. EDT. Check “going” to mark your calendar:
  • @DHSBlueCampaign's #transportation toolkit is now available. Check out all the #humantrafficking awareness resources here:
  • Do you work in the #transportation industry? @DHSBlueCampaign has a new #humantrafficking awareness toolkit for you. View it here:


    • @BlueCampaign hosted an #AskBlue Twitter chat about labor trafficking. Check out the Twitter moment here:
    • Did you follow @BlueCampaign’s Twitter chat about human trafficking on college campuses? Head to Blue Campaign’s Twitter moment to see the full conversation:
    • @BlueCampaign is hosting a Facebook Live on Sept. 20 at 1 p.m. EDT about human trafficking and Native communities. RSVP on the event page:
    • Why is it important to reach Native communities with information about human trafficking? Learn more by tuning in to @BlueCampaign’s Facebook Live on Sept. 20 at 1 p.m. EDT.:
    • We use @BlueCampaign resources to raise awareness of human trafficking in our community. They are free and available to anyone. View, download, or order them here:
    • The transportation industry plays a role in combating human trafficking. Learn how with @BlueCampaign’s new toolkit:

    For more information visit the Blue CampaignTo report suspected human trafficking: 1-866-347-2423To get help from the National Human Trafficking Hotline: 1-888-373-7888or text HELP or INFO to BeFree (233733)

    National Human Trafficking Hotline

    National Human Trafficking Hotline


    If you or someone you know is a
    victim of human trafficking, call now.
    1-888-373-7888 (TTY: 711)

    Human trafficking is a form of modern-day slavery. This crime occurs when a trafficker uses force, fraud or coercion to control another person for the purpose of engaging in commercial sex acts or soliciting labor or services against his/her will. Force, fraud, or coercion need not be present if the individual engaging in commercial sex is under 18 years of age.

    Wednesday, September 12, 2018

    24 arrested in East Valley child sex crimes operation

    MESA, AZ - A multi-agency operation to crack down on child sex crimes coined "Operation Degrossting," has resulted in the arrest of 24 suspects.

    According to the Mesa Police Department, they partnered with the Tempe, Gilbert and Chandler Police Departments as well as the Attorney General’s Office as part of the undercover operation.
    Over a recent six-day period, undercover detectives placed ads on websites commonly used by suspects looking to perform illegal sex acts, particularly with children.
    Mesa police say all 24 suspects solicited or made deals for various sex acts with the undercover detectives before they were arrested.
    Suspects in this case range from the age of 21 to 80 years old. 
    "Crimes involving children are of the highest priority and I appreciate our partnership with all the agencies involved in the successful removal of these dangerous child predators from our community," said Mesa Police Chief Ramon Batista.
    To date, 42 charges have been filed against the 24 suspects. Those charges include luring, child sex crimes, marijuana sale, and resisting arrest among others.
    Details on all 24 arrests can be found HERE on the Mesa police crime blog.
    The Mesa Police Department is urging anyone who has information about someone being trafficked to contact your local police department or the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888 or

    Friday, September 7, 2018

    DCF Hid Reports on 30 Dead Kids

    After an embarrassing article appeared in The Miami Herald in September, a regional supervisor for the Department of Children and Families ordered workers not to file required incident reports on the deaths of children who were supposed to be safeguarded by DCF, the Herald reports.

    DCF Deputy Secretary Peter Digre
    Because of that order, the deaths of at least 30 children in Southeast Florida over five months were never entered into the state information system, Carol Marbin Miller of The Miami Herald reported on Sunday. That region covers five counties, including Broward and Palm Beach.
    The regional DCF administrator who issued the order on Dec. 13 was Kimberly Welles, an administrator at the Department of Children & Families’ Southeast Region, according to e-mail records obtained by the Herald.
    Welles took the action after supervisor Lindsey McCrudden sent her a report on the death of an infant  in a family that had been the focus of DCF on four occasions, the Herald said. Welles deleted her copy and ordered McCrudden to do the same, the e-mails show.
    "No incident reports right now on death cases," Welles wrote to McCrudden, the Herald said. Welles said she'd explain later.
    At the time, DCF administrators knew that the newspaper was assembling a series of articles on the deaths of children from abuse or neglect who were supposedly under the protection of the agency.  The series Innocents Lost, which began in late March, reported that 477 children fell into that category.
    But that total left off at Nov. 1, so on March 31, the Herald reporters asked for the death reports filed after that. In gathering materials to fulfill that information request, DCF headquarters discovered there weren't any from the region that usually produced the most.
    DCF's new secretary, Mike Carroll, has assigned deputy Peter Digre to follow up, the Herald said.
    The Child Welfare Act, which orders an overhaul of the way DCF looks into abuse and neglect cases,  passed last month and was signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott. Health News Florida reported last month that the act was the major accomplishment of the 2014 Legislature.

    Thursday, September 6, 2018

    BLUE CAMPAIGN - Department of Justice - Identify A Victim

    Identify a Victim

    Everyone has a role to play in combating human trafficking. Recognizing the signs of human trafficking is the first step to identifying a victim. Our resources page has materials for a more in-depth human trafficking education and a catalog of materials that can be distributed and displayed in your community.
    Do not at any time attempt to confront a suspected trafficker directly or alert a victim to your suspicions. Your safety as well as the victim’s safety is paramount.  Instead, please contact local law enforcement directly or call the tip lines indicated on this page:
    • Call 1-866-DHS-2-ICE (1-866-347-2423) to report suspicious criminal activity to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Tip Line 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year. The Tip Line is accessible outside the United States by calling 802-872-6199.
    • Submit a tip at  Highly trained specialists take reports from both the public and law enforcement agencies on more than 400 laws enforced by ICE HSI, including those related to human trafficking.
    • To get help from the National Human Trafficking Hotline (NHTH), call 1-888-373-7888 or text HELP or INFO to BeFree (233733). The NHTH can help connect victims with service providers in the area and provides training, technical assistance, and other resources. The NHTH is a national, toll-free hotline available to answer calls from anywhere in the country, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year. The NHTH is not a law enforcement or immigration authority and is operated by a nongovernmental organization funded by the Federal government.
    By identifying victims and reporting tips, you are doing your part to help law enforcement rescue victims, and you might save a life. Law enforcement can connect victims to services such as medical and mental health care, shelter, job training, and legal assistance that restore their freedom and dignity. The presence or absence of any of the indicators is not necessarily proof of human trafficking. It is up to law enforcement to investigate suspected cases of human trafficking.
    Learn more about HSI investigations and the victims HSI has assisted from the ICE Newsroom.

    To report suspected human trafficking:
    To get help from the National Human Trafficking Hotline:
    or text HELP or INFO to
    BeFree (233733)

    Saturday, September 1, 2018

    Child Sex Predator Visits Joliet Park, Gets Arrested

    The Will County Sheriff's Department arrested this individual on Thursday night.

    Child Sex Predator Visits Joliet Park, Gets Arrested
    JOLIET, IL - The Will County Sheriff's Department arrested a 48-year-old convicted child sexual predator who was lurking around the Ridgewood Park on Thursday evening. Police reports show that Jamie Duhoski was visiting the park on Joliet's east side around 8 p.m. and someone who saw him suspected he was not supposed to be there.
    The Joliet Township park is near the corner of Cass and Walnut Streets.
    "Upon arriving at the park and running a check on him, it was learned that he was a registered sex offender and was, in fact, in a prohibited area," sheriff's officials informed Patch. Sheriff's deputies then put Duhoski in handcuffs and took him for a ride to the Will County Jail where he was charged with being a child sex offender in a prohibited zone.

    Who is Jamie Duhoski?
    The Illinois State Police sex offender registry databaseindicates Duhoski is a child sexual predator who now lives in Joliet where he is homeless.
    The state registry indicates Duhoski was 33 years old and his victim was 5 years old. He has been convicted of two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault as well as one count of failing to report his address annually. His crimes were out of Kankakee County, the registry states.

    Duhoski in 2002, police mugshot

    Will County Jail logs list Duhoski's current address as 611 East Cass Street, which is the Daybreak Shelter.
    On Friday, a judge set his bail at $10,000, meaning he needs to come up with $1,000 cash to get out of jail.
    Mugshot of Jamie Duhoski via Will County Sheriff