Photo by DHS Office of Public Affairs
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Unaccompanied children have arrived at the Southwest Border at historically high levels this spring. DHS and HHS were left to rebuild the capacity to shelter and process the children, after having inherited a system that had been entirely dismantled by the prior administration.
Graph that shows the total number of Unaccompanied Children in CBP custody over time—from March 1, 2021 to April 30 2021. Graph shows decreasing number of children in CBP custody as more children are successfully transferred to HHS care.
As a result, non-Mexican unaccompanied child arrivals at the border outnumbered transfers to the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) by an average of 150children per day in the first half of March.
DHS responded by mobilizing FEMA to expand ORR capacity to care for children and by detailing USCIS caseworkers to assist with reuniting children with a verified family member. These efforts produced results, as CBP transfers to ORR exceeded encounters by an average of 206 children per day between March 27 and May 1. (DHS Graphic by DHS Office of Public Affairs/Released)