Border patrol officers apprehended 4,177 unaccompanied alien children (UACs) attempting to illegally enter the U.S. during the month of July, according to new Customs and Border Protection data.
In that same time frame, CBP apprehended an additional 4,506 family units.
The new figures show the pace of illegal immigration by UACs and parents with children — while still less than last year’s surge — increasing. On average, CBP apprehended 135 UACs each day in July, the highest monthly level of UAC apprehensions this fiscal year.
Customs and Border Protection acknowledged last month’s increase and pointed to some of the same factors it did during last year’s massive influx, namely poor conditions in Central America and manipulative smugglers.
“In July, we experienced a slight increase over June in the number of unaccompanied children and family units apprehended,” the agency said in a statement.
“Conditions in Central America continue to worsen, especially the poverty and violence in these countries that are the primary push factors,” it added. “We are aware that smugglers, or ‘coyotes,’ often use misinformation about current immigration policies and practices to lure illegal migrants to employ their services.”
The new increase come on the heels of the Obama administration’s attempt to dissuade would-be illegal immigrants from making the journey north via a media campaign.
CBP launched the “Know the Facts” campaign in Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras in late July.
As of July 31 this fiscal year, which started in October, CBP has reported apprehending 30,862 UACs and 29,407 family units. The figures are high compared to prior years but still are not on the level seen last fiscal year when CBP apprehended 62,977 UACs and 62,848 family units.