In the US non-citizens are increasingly being incarcerated, held for indeterminate periods of time often in unsafe conditions, and not afforded similar judicial processes as offenders who are US citizens. Crimmigration practices in the US have a number of significant issues associated with the blending of crime control and immigration enforcement.
Researchers: Mary Bosworth and Emma Kaufman
Keywords: Immigration, Imprisonment, Detention, Crimmigation, US
What does the evidence say?
Using official imprisonment data, the research found;
- The number of non-citizens being detained in prisons/jails (52%) and immigration detentions centre had expanded more than four times in less than 20 years, with the population of total non-citizen prisoners being at 14% in state/federal facilities.
- 36% of the detained population are Mexican citizens.
- There is a disproportionate increase in the imprisonment of foreign-born offenders versus citizen offenders (15% versus 10% rise) and this only includes available figures, as detainees within US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) field offices remain unknown.
The research documents the aggressive pursuit of “crimmigration” within the US, particularly from the mid-1990s onward. Although immigration detainees are likely to be more vulnerable than the average citizen offender, these detainees are not given the same level of legal protections and face additional issues including lack of judicial review, double punishments, and a lack of time restriction on detention. ICE operates its detention facilities based on prisons and uses the language of criminalization around the detainees, but they are not held to the regulations of prisons. Lastly, this research identifies the serious issues concerning conditions in facilities of ICE processing centres, in reflection to the vulnerability of this population.
What does it mean?
Imprisonment of non-citizens has been steadily increasing in the US and the rights of these prisoners are not protected by law which has led to abuses.
How was the research done?
The research examines official statistics, legislation such as IIRIRA, AEDPA, Patriot Act, “Secure Communities” and the institutions of CCTV along the border by Texas, SB 1070 in Arizona, and volunteer groups in border states which patrol to catch undocumented migrants.
Read the full article
For further expert advice
Parliamentary Submission on Citizenship Act amendments: gendered impacts of strengthened English language proficiency test on migrant women
A recent parliamentary submission that heavily featured findings from my thesis was submitted and my … Continue reading Parliamentary Submission on Citizenship Act amendments: gendered impacts of strengthened English language proficiency test on migrant women
Snapshot: Family Violence and Refugee and Asylum-Seeking Women
Below is a quick summary and link to the a full review that examines extant … Continue reading Snapshot: Family Violence and Refugee and Asylum-Seeking Women
Everyday Security: Research Update
The concept of security must be expanded past the discussions of state border tactics or … Continue reading Everyday Security: Research Update
Immigration Detention Centre experiences: A meandering un-academic post
Harmondsworth Trandum Etched on the back of the bathroom door, a bird singing with an … Continue reading Immigration Detention Centre experiences: A meandering un-academic post
Mothers’ Migration Motivations
Summing up mounting pressures and trying to find a way to leave Iran, Sabeen, a … Continue reading Mothers’ Migration Motivations
How to expect the unexpected. Or how being prepared never prepares you.
Before I stepped foot into the field, I had a lot of notions about how … Continue reading How to expect the unexpected. Or how being prepared never prepares you.
Motherhood and Migration
Motherhood and Migration Project: Despite the fact that motherhood and migration are both considered life-changing … Continue reading Motherhood and Migration
Multicultural Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Health of Paramount Importance
Contraceptive technologies and reproductive choices among immigrant and refugee women were at the centre of … Continue reading Multicultural Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Health of Paramount Importance
Policy changes at the crux of refugee agency’s work
At a recent state inquiry into TAFE, asylum seeker and refugee considerations were represented regarding … Continue reading Policy changes at the crux of refugee agency’s work
Who has the power?
Power is not as straightforward as it may look on the surface. Who holds the … Continue reading Who has the power?
When the law falls short, will a cultural of human rights will prevail?
A gathering of interested individuals, from diplomats to AFP officers to community members, filled the … Continue reading When the law falls short, will a cultural of human rights will prevail?
All Deaths in detention are noteworthy, even if not deemed newsworthy
Reza Berati’s name has been prescient in Australian minds in recent weeks. His death in … Continue reading All Deaths in detention are noteworthy, even if not deemed newsworthy