SEVERE WX : Flood Warning View Alerts
CLOSINGS: View Closings

HHS refusing to release family separation stats

Trump administration officials are refusing to release new statistics on how many families have been reunited since a judge ordered the US government to halt most family separations at the border. CNN's Nick Valencia reports.

Posted: Jul 4, 2018 10:39 AM
Updated: Jul 4, 2018 10:55 AM

How many immigrant families have been reunited since a judge ordered the US government to halt most family separations at the border?

And how many kids from separated immigrant families are still in government custody?

We don't know, because officials aren't saying.

It's been a week since they released a tally of how many kids from separated families remain in government custody.

And officials have repeatedly declined to respond to questions about how many families have been reunited.

Deadlines are looming; the government has less than a month to reunite the families it separated. Here's the latest:

On June 20, the Department of Health and Human Services said there were 2,053 children from separated families in its care. On June 26, the agency said there were 2,047 such children.

Why haven't officials released updated figures since then? According to HHS, it's because the number of immigrant children in the agency's care is always in flux -- and because they are working with other agencies to cross-check the numbers they have.

Federal officials have released updated statements revealing the total number of immigrant children in their care -- a figure that includes children who crossed the border alone and children who were separated from their families after crossing. But since June 26, they've refused to specify how many kids from separated families remain in custody.

Here's why that particular statistic matters: It's the only figure officials have provided that gives us any indication of whether reunions are happening.

This isn't a perfect equation; we don't know whether the children released from HHS custody were reunited with parents -- only that they're no longer in one of the agency's shelters. The government has not answered questions about the circumstances of their release.

But without a response to questions about how many reunions have occurred -- or at least an updated figure on the number of kids from separated families who remain in custody -- the public has no way to track whether families are being reunited or how quickly it's occurring. All we have are anecdotal examples of a few scattered reunions at airports.

The latest information we have was provided to CNN by a US government source: a map showing that the 2,047 separated unaccompanied minors who were in custody of the HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement as of June 25 were scattered across 16 states.

In response to CNN inquiries over the past week asking for updated statistics on the number of kids from separated families in custody, officials have released the following statement:

"As HHS continues to evaluate the impact of the District Court ruling, and given the constantly changing number of unaccompanied alien children in our care (every day minors are referred to our care and released from our care to parents, close relatives or suitable sponsors), we are providing the total number of unaccompanied alien children in the care of HHS-funded grantees. While we understand the interest in detailed breakdowns of this information, our mission has been and remains to provide every minor transferred to HHS, regardless of the circumstances, with quality and age-appropriate care and a speedy and safe release to a sponsor."

On June 26, US District Judge Dana Sabraw laid out a series of deadlines in his ruling.

By July 6, officials must make sure every separated parent has a way to contact their child. By July 10, children under 5 must be reunited with their parents. And by July 26, all children should be reunited with their parents.

Officials have said they'll comply with the judge's order, but they haven't specified what steps they'll take to do that. They are scheduled to appear in court on Friday for a status hearing.

Attorneys for the ACLU, which has sued the government over the family separations practice, say they are monitoring the situation and will go back to the court if officials fail to comply with the deadlines.

West Lafayette
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 57°
Kokomo
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 55°
Rensselaer
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 55°
Fowler
Clear
57° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 57°
Williamsport
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 58°
Crawfordsville
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 57° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 59°
Frankfort
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 59°
Delphi
Clear
56° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 34°
Feels Like: 56°
Monticello
Clear
56° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 56°
Logansport
Clear
55° wxIcon
Hi: 56° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 55°
A cold and frosty start but enjoy the dry weather today.
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1012606

Reported Deaths: 16567
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1360682133
Lake667261170
Allen58341804
Hamilton46545468
St. Joseph44627619
Elkhart36101512
Vanderburgh32358482
Tippecanoe28053261
Johnson25224447
Hendricks23977362
Porter23018367
Madison18848412
Clark18640254
Vigo17562304
Monroe15340199
LaPorte15249252
Delaware15135264
Howard14839292
Kosciusko12433149
Hancock11788177
Bartholomew11712180
Warrick11314188
Floyd11149216
Wayne11036254
Grant10159220
Morgan9512178
Boone8976116
Dubois8291132
Henry8265155
Dearborn824793
Noble8075106
Marshall7995135
Cass7569123
Lawrence7494172
Shelby7236117
Jackson701990
Gibson6621115
Harrison653293
Huntington6456100
Knox6429107
DeKalb6375102
Montgomery6304112
Miami596298
Putnam584879
Clinton579772
Whitley569756
Steuben568677
Jasper537681
Wabash5372104
Jefferson513997
Ripley502587
Adams484876
Daviess4692115
Scott440576
Greene428496
Clay427760
Wells426388
White421365
Decatur4182105
Fayette407587
Jennings390763
Posey377944
LaGrange362779
Washington360551
Randolph348199
Spencer341243
Fountain337060
Sullivan331252
Starke319871
Owen316271
Fulton315868
Orange295564
Jay286446
Franklin266743
Perry265852
Rush264432
Carroll262534
Vermillion260554
Parke232429
Pike229744
Tipton229359
Blackford195143
Pulaski184757
Newton160448
Crawford160226
Benton151417
Brown147547
Martin139819
Switzerland135611
Warren121416
Union107316
Ohio85013
Unassigned0545

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events