ICE permits and encourages unfair labor practices at immigration detention centers in New Mexico

Individuals held in immigration detention typically do not have work authorization. However, ICE detention standard 5.8 defines a “Voluntary Work Program” whereby detained individuals can earn a minimum of $1 per eight our work day.1 On 21 December 2017 “a majority of the USCCR voted to call on Congress to investigate alleged abusive labor practices at government- and privately-operated immigration detention centers and require fair wages for all detainees”2

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Viable and cheaper alternatives to immigration detention exist

The American Immigration Council’s January 25, 2017 ” The Cost of Immigration Enforcement and Border Security” Fact Sheet indicates that ICE spending has grown 85% since its inception rising from $3.3 billion to $6.1 billion. Efforts are afoot to increase this even further and to expand immigration detention. However, ICE has viable humane alternatives that are about 1/10 of the ever ballooning cost of detention.

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Header image attribution

This website’s header image is from a panorama of the Organ Mountains in Las Cruces that was captured in October of 2018 by Flickr user Joseph j7uy5. The full resolution copy of this fantastic creative commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0) licensed image can be found here. To produce the header, we down sampled the original 4661 x 1279 pixel image and cropped it. We are grateful to Joseph for placing this image in the creative commons.