According to a memo from Legislative Finance Committee Director David Abbey, he claims that a “data error” changed Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s Children, Youth, and Families Department (CYFD) child mortality data from 2020 to show the number had more than doubled to 23. He claims the true number is 13, which is a rise of two deaths from 2019, which was 11.
The Santa Fe New Mexican reports, “While a committee memo distributed to legislators Tuesday said child maltreatment deaths had more than doubled to 23 in 2020 from 11 a year earlier, the new memo said the actual number of deaths in 2020 was 13. The change was based on a CYFD data error, the memo added.”
But with this new apparent “data error” on very serious child mortality rates, how are New Mexicans supposed to trust that this is the true number and how are they to trust the integrity of the data provided to the public?
Instead of the Lujan Grisham’s department acknowledging fault, the Governor’s secretary-designate Barbara Vigil claimed on Friday “the error was instead the result of the Legislative Finance Committee staff’s interpretation of the data,” according to the report.
She said, “In response to LFC’s corrected memo, CYFD provided correct information on child fatalities to LFC from two sources, namely, from CYFD and the Office of the Medical Investigator in accordance with federal reporting standards,” Vigil wrote. “It appears that LFC duplicated the count from CYFD and the count from OMI to arrive at the 23 fatalities, which was incorrect. Had LFC communicated with CYFD prior to the finalization of the memo, this error would have been caught immediately.”
Also in the previous memo provided to legislators that New Mexico had the second-highest rate of repeated child mistreatment in the nation, Lujan Grisham’s CYFD has failed regarding staff vacancies and high turnover in critical leadership positions.
Time will tell if the data proves to be true, but the Lujan Grisham regime’s failure to get the story straight with New Mexicans regarding this serious data calls into question the Democrat governor and her Democrat-led Legislative Finance Committee.