After an officer’s death, families wait — and wait — for government benefits

After a police officer or firefighter dies in the line of duty, their family mourns them, their communities memorialize them — and federal death benefits are supposed to reach their family within 90 days.  For hundreds of families, that 90-day wait can stretch into months and sometimes years, according to a nationwide investigation by the…

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Investigation into H-2 visa program reveals exploitation, abuse

More than 10,000 people from countries including Mexico, the Philippines and South Africa come to the United States each year on H-2 visas, a government program that allows employers to import foreign labor for jobs Americans won’t take. But a BuzzFeed News investigation has found that thousands of the workers have been deprived of pay,…

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Fatal Extraction: Australian mining in Africa

A new multimedia and interactive project shows an on-the-ground look at the hundreds of people who have died in mining accidents connected to Australian companies in 13 countries in Africa. The Center for Public Integrity and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists show first-hand accounts from people across Africa that are rarely shared outside of…

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$15 million in state funds held in non-profit bank account

KARK 4 News spent two months going through years of board minutes, financial documents and audits after receiving a tip that millions of state dollars were sitting in an out-of-state account, even as rice farmers continued to pay millions in check-offs each year. The station found that members of the state board voted to send…

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Extra Extra Monday: Tracking charges for cops, undocumented overtime, police failure in Sharper case

A record of trouble | The Marshall Project As California prepares to greatly expand its use of halfway houses for people leaving its overcrowded prisons, state officials have turned for help to a private halfway house operator that has been cited in other states for inadequate care, unchecked violence and repeated escapes at its facilities.…

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Extra Extra Monday: Buffett’s mobile-home trap, Rolling Stone’s UVA failures, women incarcerated

City doesn’t track return on incentives | Cincinnati Enquirer When the Enquirer asked Cincinnati about $250 million in incentives granted to business and developers since 2008 and how return on that massive investment is tracked, city officials couldn’t provide answers. The newspaper’s reporters then created and scoured a database of seven years’ worth of deals…

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Florida’s migrant laborers forced to live in squalor

An investigation by the Sarasota Herald-Tribune has found that thousands of Florida’s migrant laborers are forced to live in dormitories and mobile homes where sewage backs up into kitchens, where leaks turn to mold and broken windows expose tenants to Florida’s extreme weather and pests. The state health department regulates these facilities, but they rarely…

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Extra Extra Monday: Prenatal screening tests, prison labor programs and nonprofit donations

Oversold and misunderstood: Prenatal screening tests prompt abortions | The New England Center for Investigative Reporting Sparked by the sequencing of the human genome a decade ago, a new generation of prenatal screening tests, including MaterniT21, has exploded onto the market in the past three years. The unregulated screens claim to detect with near-perfect accuracy…

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Federal tech contracts awarded to job brokers with labor violations

When the U.S. Department of Labor needed a new contractor to upgrade its aging computer systems, it turned to labor broker Saras America. The firm should have sounded familiar. The year before, regulators had threatened to block the company from importing foreign workers because it had shorted the pay of nearly 40 high-tech employees, among…

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