We found violations of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention standards undermining the protection of detainees’ rights and the provision of a safe and healthy environment. Although the conditions varied among the facilities and not every problem was present at each, our observations, interviews with detainees and staff, and review of documents revealed several common issues. At three facilities, we found segregation practices infringing on detainee rights. Detainees at all four facilities had difficulties resolving issues through the grievance and communication systems, including allegations of verbal abuse by staff. Two facilities had issues with classifying detainees according to their risk levels, which could affect safety. Lastly, we identified living conditions at three facilities that violate ICE standards. We recommended the Acting Director of ICE ensure the Enforcement and Removal Operations field offices overseeing the detention facilities covered in the report address identified issues and ensure facility compliance with relevant detention standards. We made one recommendation that will help ICE ensure compliance with detention standards. ICE concurred with the recommendation.
- Executive SummaryReport NumberOIG-20-45Issue DateDocument FileDHS AgencyOversight AreaKeywordsFiscal Year2020
- Executive Summary
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Office of Field operations (OFO) personnel at ports of entry had separated 60 asylum-seeking families between May 6 and July 9, 2018, despite CBP’s claim that it had separated only 7 such families. More than half of those separations were based solely on the asylum-seeking parents’ prior non-violent immigration violations, which appeared to be inconsistent with official DHS public messaging. After a June 27, 2018 court ruling, CBP issued specific guidance, and the ports separated fewer families in the prior months. Despite the new guidance, we continue to have concerns about DHS’ ability to accurately identify and address all family separations due to data reliability issues. In late June 2018, CBP modified its system for tracking aliens at the ports of entry to capture family separation data consistently, but it could not provide a reliable number of families separated before June 2018. We made one recommendation that will help CBP’s data collection. CBP concurred with our recommendation.Report NumberOIG-20-35Issue DateDocument FileDHS AgencyFiscal Year2020
- Executive Summary
Through its Criminal Alien Program (CAP), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) can successfully identify aliens charged with or convicted of crimes. However, because ICE relies on cooperation from other law enforcement agencies, it sometimes faces challenges apprehending aliens in uncooperative jurisdictions. ICE’s inability to detain aliens identified through CAP contributes to increased risk those aliens will commit more crimes. Furthermore, having to arrest “at-large” aliens may put officer, detainee, and public safety at risk and strains ICE’s staffing resources. We made four recommendations to ICE focused on improving CAP. ICE concurred with all four recommendations and initiated corrective actions to address the findings.Report NumberOIG-20-13Issue DateDocument FileDHS AgencyKeywordsFiscal Year2020
DHS OIG written testimony of Diana Shaw who will testify before the House Homeland Security Committee, Subcommittee on Oversight, Management, and Accountability at a hearing entitled, "Oversight of ICE Detention Facilities: Is DHS Doing Enough?"
For your action is our final management alert, Management Alert – DHS Needs to Address Dangerous Overcrowding and Prolonged Detention of Children and Adults in the Rio Grande Valley, the purpose of which is to notify you of urgent issues that require immediate attention and action. Specifically, we encourage the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to take immediate steps to alleviate dangerous overcrowding and prolonged detention of children and adults in the Rio Grande Valley.