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OIG Finds Data Integrity Issues at Yuma Sector Border Patrol

During unannounced inspections of three U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) locations in the Yuma area of Arizona in September 2021, the Office of Inspector General observed that all three U.S. Border Patrol facilities inspected generally met National Standards on Transport, Escort, Detention, and Search (TEDS) standards for noncitizen unaccompanied children (NUC), families, and single adult women at the time of observation. During the week of OIG’s inspection, NUCs were not held longer than 72 hours. Some families were held up to six days, and a few single adults up to two weeks. 

CBP also met TEDS standards at the two Office of Field Operations (OFO) ports of entry that OIG visited. There were no detainees at the OFO facilities at the time of the site visit. However, during the visit, OIG found that conditions for single adult men held at the Border Patrol’s Yuma station did not always meet TEDS standards. Single adult men were held in crowded conditions, and those held in overflow military tents experienced temperatures exceeding 95 degrees. 

OIG also observed some data integrity issues in Yuma sector. For example, agents did not uniformly update their assignments when they were required to leave the field to assist with detainee transport or immigration processing. According to OIG, Yuma station’s systems did not accurately reflect which detainees were being held in cells indoors and in overflow military tents outdoors. In addition, the watchdog found that Information about access to supplies, showers, and medical screening was unreliable. 

Following its review, OIG recommended that Yuma sector Border Patrol monitor data integrity. CBP officials concurred with the recommendation, stating that a senior Yuma CBP official will review custodial action logs three days a week for one month for randomly selected non-citizens in custody. These reviews will examine whether appropriate custodial actions were provided and recorded, for the non-citizens in custody. The Yuma official will either document this process or complete an after-action report with findings. If the issue persists, additional training will be provided. CBP estimates completion by August 31, 2022. 

No recommendations were made on TEDS compliance because of relevant outstanding recommendations from a prior review. 

Read the full report at OIG

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The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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