President Joe Biden’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is facing criticism and concern after a report from the DHS Inspector General (IG), Joseph Cuffari, revealed that the agency has lost track of a significant number of border crossers released into the United States. According to the audit, conducted from March 2021 through August 2022, DHS failed to maintain contact with nearly 20% of the approximately 981,000 border crossers who were reviewed during that period.
The IG report highlighted the following key issues:
Missing or Invalid Addresses: DHS struggled to obtain and record accurate addresses for released migrants. Of the reviewed records, more than 177,000 migrant addresses were either missing, invalid for delivery, or not legitimate residential locations. This raises concerns about DHS’s ability to track and monitor individuals who have entered the U.S. interior.
Challenges in Address Recording: The report pointed out that DHS faced several challenges in accurately recording addresses. The large number of migrants apprehended, limited coordination between U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and limited authority to enforce compliance with address requirements contributed to these issues.
Use of Invalid Addresses: Some recorded addresses provided by migrants were restaurants, bus stops, car dealerships, churches, and other invalid locations. This further indicates problems with address verification and tracking.
Overcrowded Living Conditions: In cases where border crossers provided legitimate addresses, many were recorded multiple times within an 18-month period. This raised concerns about the safety and living conditions at these addresses, as multiple families or individuals were listed as residing at the same location.
Charity Addresses: Some addresses recorded by USBP agents were associated with charities. However, charities typically serve as temporary residences and are not the migrants’ final destinations. Migrants are expected to update their addresses once they reach their ultimate destinations in the United States.
The report underscores the challenges and deficiencies within the DHS’s handling of border crossers and the enforcement of address requirements. The sheer volume of border crossers released into the U.S. interior during Biden’s presidency is also a matter of significant concern, with approximately five million individuals entering the country illegally since he took office.
These findings raise questions about the effectiveness of the Biden administration’s immigration policies and the potential risks associated with losing track of a significant portion of individuals entering the country without proper documentation. Critics argue that stronger border security measures and improved tracking mechanisms are necessary to address these issues and ensure national security.