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Wisconsin Watch partners with Gigafact to produce fact briefs — bite-sized fact checks of trending claims. Read our methodology to learn how we check claims.


Republican U.S. Rep. Glenn Grothman, who represents part of eastern Wisconsin north of Madison and Milwaukee, made the claim Feb. 27, 2023 on the House floor.

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection reports border “encounters” with its agents. Its latest figures, posted Feb. 2, 2023, show 47,092 unaccompanied minor encounters in the previous four months. That’s an average of 11,773 per month.

Unaccompanied minor encounters in fiscal year 2022 — Oct. 1, 2021 through Sept. 30, 2022 — totaled 152,880. That’s an average of 12,740 per month.

The figures include minors crossing the border illegally between legal points of entry, such as walking across the U.S.-Mexico border, and those trying to cross at legal points of entry.

Federal policy is to transfer unaccompanied minors into facilities run by the Office of Refugee Resettlement within 72 hours.

This Fact Brief is responsive to conversations such as this one.


Forbes Breaking News: ‘Please Look Out For The Children!’: Glenn Grothman Lays Into Biden & New York Times Over Border

US Customs and Border Protection: Nationwide Encounters

Pew Research: Single adults have driven increase in migrant encounters during COVID-19 pandemic

US Department of Health and Human Services: ORR Unaccompanied Children Program Policy Guide: Section 1

US Customs and Border Protection: Nationwide Encounters

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Tom Kertscher joined as a Wisconsin Watch fact checker in January 2023 and contributes to our collaboration with the The Gigafact Project to fight misinformation online. Kertscher is a former longtime newspaper reporter, including at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, who has worked as a self-employed journalist since 2019. His gigs include contributing writer for PolitiFact and sports freelancer for The Associated Press.