2024 Winner, Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting

Alone and Exploited

Reporter Hannah Dreier’s investigation into the wide resurgence of child labor in the United States began with a simple question: As more unaccompanied migrant children began crossing the border than ever before, where were they all going? In this 20-month long investigation, Dreier uncovered a culture of careless disregard for child labor laws at construction sites, slaughterhouses and in factories across the country and a “chain of willful ignorance” at every point in the system meant to protect children from exploitation. Dreier earned the trust of hundreds of migrant children, federal contractors, investigators and auditors, government social workers, and sources at the highest levels of the White House and federal agencies to bring the truth to light. The impact of her investigation was swift and prompted immediate reforms across state and federal agencies as well as dozens of major corporations and brands.

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