Samaritas under investigation by the state health department

MICHIGAN — A Michigan nonprofit organization is under investigation by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).

The state health department confirmed the information with FOX 17 on Friday afternoon.

MDHHS says it is currently unable to comment on details of the investigation, as directed by Michigan child welfare law.

MDHHS declined an interview but provided the following statement to Fox 17:

“The department takes its responsibility to protect all children from abuse and neglect very seriously and has contacted the appropriate federal officials for their review. We are prohibited from releasing details of a CPS investigation under the Michigan Child Protection, DHS-Pub-0003, Child Protection Act (michigan.gov), and by federal law, 42 USC 671(a)(8).”

Fox 17 has also reached out to Samaritas, which has branches across the state. They did not comment on the allegations, nor did they indicate which branch was under investigation. However, they provided this statement:

“For decades, Samaritas’ New Americans program has provided aid to thousands of refugees from Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Central and South America. Through this program, we have supported unaccompanied Afghan refugee minors in our care, providing these young people with the emotional, social, physical and spiritual resources they need. Our skilled team has worked tirelessly to provide traumatized children with the best quality care available, and we will continue to support all of the refugees we are honored to serve.

“We cannot provide information on ongoing investigations, but what we can say is that Samaritas remains committed to providing a safe and secure environment for the vulnerable populations it serves. To that end, we We follow strong security protocols, including conducting thorough background checks on all employees, initiating posting procedures to ensure all aspects of care are covered, and installing security cameras safety in our facilities Additionally, given the extreme trauma this population has faced, we have provided more qualified team members than necessary to ensure these children have the resources they need.

FOX 17 will report any future updates as investigations unfold.

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