Ripped off: Foreign students claim abuses in US jobs program

WHAT: The State Department put a freeze on expansion of the J-1 visa program, which has lined up U.S. summer jobs for foreign college students since 1963. There have been persistent complaints about young people being ripped off and exploited.

HOW: An Associated Press investigation reported some students were put up in shabby, crowded apartments and forced to work grueling hours at backbreaking, menial jobs for $1 an hour or less. Some went to homeless shelters for food or a place to sleep.

WHY IT’S OUTRAGEOUS: Students pay several thousands of dollars to participate and are promised their rights will be protected. The J-1 program has become big business over the years, generating millions for employers and middleman contractors.

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