Unaccompanied Children Released to Sponsors by County

When a child who is not accompanied by a parent or legal guardian is apprehended by immigration authorities, the child is transferred to the care and custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).  Federal law requires that ORR feed, shelter, and provide medical care for unaccompanied children until it is able to release them to safe settings with sponsors (usually family members), while they await immigration proceedings. These sponsors live in many states.

Sponsors are adults who are suitable to provide for the child’s physical and mental well-being and have not engaged in any activity that would indicate a potential risk to the child. All sponsors must pass a background check. The sponsor must agree to ensure the child’s presence at all future immigration proceedings. They also must agree to ensure the minor reports to ICE for removal from the United States if an immigration judge issues a removal order or voluntary departure order. 

HHS is engaging with state officials to address concerns they may have about the care or impact of unaccompanied children in their states, while making sure the children are treated humanely and consistent with the law as they go through immigration court proceedings that will determine whether they will be removed and repatriated, or qualify for some form of relief.

HHS has strong policies in place to ensure the privacy and safety of unaccompanied children by maintaining the confidentiality of their personal information. These children may have histories of abuse or may be seeking safety from threats of violence. They may have been trafficked or smuggled.  HHS cannot release information about individual children that could compromise the child’s location or identity.

The following table shows county-level data for unaccompanied children released to sponsors by the counties where the sponsors live, where 50 or more children have been released for FY 2015 (since September 30, 2015).  This data covers 104 counties nationwide and comprises 19,843 of the 27,520 total children released to sponsors in this period. ACF will update this data each month. See the state-by-state data.

State County

Total Number of UCs Released  to Sponsors in FY15 YTD (Oct. 2014 – Sept. 2015)

AL Franklin County 57
AL Jefferson County 94
AL Marshall County 130
AL Morgan County 69
AL Tuscaloosa County 86
AZ Maricopa County 146
AR Pulaski County 62
CA Alameda County 295
CA Contra Costa County 119
CA Fresno County 70
CA Kern County 64
CA Los Angeles County 1598
CA Marin County 70
CA Monterey County 62
CA Orange County 159
CA Riverside County 156
CA San Bernardino County 69
CA San Diego County 142
CA San Francisco County 138
CA San Mateo County 154
CA Santa Clara County 129
CA Ventura County 70
CT Fairfield County 99
DE Sussex County 120
FL Broward County 203
FL Collier County 219
FL Duval County 81
FL Hillsborough County 103
FL Lee County 268
FL Martin County 91
FL Miami-Dade County 666
FL Orange County 99
FL Palm Beach County 718
GA Cherokee County 62
GA Cobb County 102
GA DeKalb County 235
GA Gwinnett County 158
GA Hall County 58
IL Cook County 141
IN Marion County 86
KS Ford County 65
KS Seward County 63
KY Jefferson County 73
LA East Baton Rouge Parish 93
LA Jefferson Parish 162
LA Orleans Parish 89
MD Anne Arundel County 80
MD Baltimore County 130
MD Frederick County 73
MD Howard County (NEW IN SEPTEMBER) 54
MD Montgomery County 534
MD Prince George's County 664
MD Baltimore city 141
MA Bristol County 62
MA Essex County 177
MA Middlesex County 121
MA Suffolk County 264
MN Nobles County 53
NE Douglas County 87
NV Clark County 129
NJ Bergen County 191
NJ Essex County 165
NJ Hudson County 183
NJ Mercer County 87
NJ Middlesex County 67
NJ Morris County (NEW IN SEPTEMBER) 56
NJ Union County 395
NY Bronx County 174
NY Kings County 281
NY Nassau County 486
NY Queens County 506
NY Rockland County 124
NY Suffolk County 637
NY Westchester County 221
NC Durham County 88
NC Mecklenburg County 208
NC Wake County 96
NC Wayne County 56
OH Franklin County 96
OH Hamilton County 146
OH Tuscarawas County 76
OK Oklahoma County 72
OK Texas County 61
PA Philadelphia County 105
RI Providence County 167
SC Greenville County 69
TN Davidson County 202
TN Hamilton County 81
TN Knox County 68
TN Shelby County 163
TX Bexar County 81
TX Dallas County 472
TX Harris County 1706
TX Montgomery County 66
TX Tarrant County 102
TX Travis County 160
VA Arlington County 87
VA Chesterfield County 76
VA Fairfax County 560
VA Loudoun County 118
VA Prince William County 231
VA Alexandria city 106
VA Richmond city 96
WA King County 93

See the FY14 county level data

For more information, please read ORR’s reunification policy.

Last Reviewed: November 2, 2015