In the midst of a national shortage of infant formula, some Republicans have found a scapegoat: undocumented immigrant children.
Several GOP MPs have taken on Twitter in recent days until criticize the Biden administration for sending “pallets” with baby formula to the places of detention of migrants, which are supposed to direct supplies away from mothers born in America. Their claims are light in detail and sometimes downright deceptive, ignoring the real causes of the shortage, as they clumsily shift the blame onto a relatively small group.
Representative Kat Kamak (R – Florida) helped provoke outrage afterwards tweeting photos comparing the supply of formula in what she said were local food shelves and Ursula’s processing center, a detention center for immigrants. “This is what America looks like last time,” Kammak said.
The first photo is from this morning at the Ursula Processing Center on the US border. Shelves and pallets packed with baby formula.
The second is from a shelf right here at home. The formula is scarce.
This is what America looks like last. pic.twitter.com/OO0V99njoy
– Kat Kammak (@Kat_Cammack) May 11, 2022
Holes in Kammak’s history soon began to appear. Newsweek received A comment from an employee of Ursula, who said that “there were no pallets with baby formula and that currently only unmarried adults are accommodated in the facility.” What’s more, the photo that Cammack tweets, which allegedly highlights an empty shelf “right here at home” appear in an March 11 article by El Paso. It has been used at least twice in April.
Representative Troy Nels (R – Texas) reiterated Cammack’s concerns, tweeting: “Baby’s milk should go to the Americans before the illegals. That shouldn’t be said.” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and the National Border Patrol Council released a joint statement saying the Biden administration’s decision to provide infant formula to undocumented immigrants was “reckless” and “untouchable”.
Migrants in detention centers are not free to leave the facilities when they want to shop for baby formula. By law, basic products must be provided to migrant children detained by the government. “The facilities will provide access to … drinking water and food as appropriate,” reads 1997 Flores a settlement aimed at treating migrant children. Customs and Border Patrol since 2015 document on standards of detention, noted that “food should be appropriate for the age and ability of detainees at risk (such as formula and baby food)”. These legal standards were before the Biden administration.
Nor would redirecting baby formula away from immigrant detention centers alleviate supply chain problems in a meaningful way. Ursula – the Cammack facility listed on Twitter –hold about 1,100 detained. IN number of American parents who rely on formula to feed their babies, is on order on millions. Although a few Republican lawmakers and right-wing news retail outlets field arousing for “pallets for formula milk for all illegals crossing into the United States, “no one is able to say exactly how much formula milk goes to places of detention or how often shipments arrive.
Lack of formula for babies is really a huge problem. concerning 40 percent of the best brands of baby formulas are exhausted at the moment, and manufacturers are attention that the shortage may last several months. But the shortage is not caused by the increased legal obligation to feed the children he has detained. “Much of the current shortage is rooted in a Reminder for February of formula after a suspected bacterial epidemic at the Abbott Nutrition plant in Michigan, ” explains The reasonis Eric Bohm. And while we could refill these shelves with formula from abroad, tariffs and quotas “make it burdensome and expensive to import the supplies that are now desperately needed”.
You cannot solve the national shortage by making it difficult for undocumented parents to feed their babies. Instead of looking for a scapegoat for immigrants, lawmakers need to address this trade and regulatory policies which helped create the current shortage.