The last 24 hours have been rich with mainstream media headlines claiming the Trump administration lost about 1,500 migrant children.
“US lost track of 1,500 undocumented children,” CNN reported.
“The U.S. lost track of 1,475 immigrant children last year,” the Washington Post added.
“Federal officials lost – yes, lost – 1,475 migrant children,” USA Today also reported.
But, the Trump administration is fighting back and is saying the children have never been missing.
Check it out, per Washington Examiner:
The 1,500 immigrant children whom critics claim were lost while in U.S. custody were instead turned over caretakers who didn’t respond to the government’s follow-up contacts, the Department of Health and Human Services said Monday.
The Office of Refugee Resettlement, which is part of the department, began voluntarily making 30-day follow-up calls in late 2016 to sponsors who had taken the unaccompanied minors, and figures on those who couldn’t be reached were disclosed during a Congressional hearing in April. The calls were intended to determine whether the children or their sponsors needed further government services.
“These children are not ‘lost,'” Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan said, per the report. “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.”
According to the report, many of the migrants or their caretakers may have dismissed governmental contact because they were illegally in the U.S. and did not wish to risk deportation.
“The U.S. taxpayer can no longer be responsible for being a surrogate parent for every would-be illegal immigrant who crosses our border,” the department said in the statement.
“While Health and Human Services houses and cares for unaccompanied children until the point at which unaccompanied children can be released to a sponsor, Congress has not given Health and Human Services the power or the funding to reach far beyond its primary statutory authority,” the agency added. “Indeed, that could require billions of additional dollars.”
Congressional leaders are reportedly looking into solutions for minimizing what Republican Senator Rob Portman describes as informational “cracks.”
“It’s just a system that has so many gaps, so many opportunities for these children to fall between the cracks, that we just don’t know what’s going on — how much trafficking or abuse or simply immigration law violations are occurring,” Republican Senator Rob Portman said.
One America News Network similarly reports that former Senator and presidential candidate Rick Santorum also clarified that the Trump administration placed children into the care of the sponsors:
Members of the Republican party are pushing back against a recent report that claims the government lost track of 1,500 migrant children in the U.S.
Former Senator Rick Santorum said the children aren’t missing, but he did admit the government may not know their current status.
Note: The author of this article has included commentary that expresses an opinion and analysis of the facts.
Santorum said it’s impossible for 100 percent of sponsors to follow up on their location and status, saying the criticism is nothing more than a talking point for pundits.
He says the government will continue to follow up with the sponsors in order to guarantee the safety and wellbeing of the children in the program.