WASHINGTON, Feb 16 – A private prison company will run a new US-based program that will include hundreds of immigrants caught crossing the US-Mexico border into housing, the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS). What critics say is an extension of the for-profit detention.
BI Incorporated, a subsidiary of the private prisons company GEO Group, will use a driving system called “return time”, said a DHS spokesman and two US officials. Immigrants who apply for the program will be detained in the United States for up to 12 hours a day and will be monitored while awaiting trial.
Stores reported last week a new system, which will require immigrants to stay in their locations from 8 p.m. until 8am
Biden officials have strongly promoted so-called “alternatives to arrest,” such as ankle bracelets and cell phone monitoring. The selection of a private prison company to operate a repatriation driver shows how companies can maintain a solid foundation in the world of immigration law.
The GEO Group declined to comment and instead referred questions to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which oversees immigration detention and is under DHS. Asked about the program, a DHS spokesman referred to the program as part of “changes that contribute to arrests.”
U.S. President Joe Biden, a Democrat, signed a letter to the executive council shortly after taking office in January 2021 revoking private prison contracts in order to “reduce profits based on profits” of incarceration and to deal with racial discrimination.
To date, however, Biden has failed to deliver on the campaign promise to do the same in the case of foreign prisoners.
There are currently 21,000 immigrants in government detention centers, up from 19,000 on September 30, 2020, before Biden took office. Immigrant detention centers operate at reduced capacity due to COVID-19.
The number of people currently in custody is much lower than the pre-COVID levels under former President Donald Trump, a Republican and immigration hardliner.
Biden officials closed two foreign detention centers and told ICE to reduce its detention target, focusing on serious criminals.
With Biden’s decision regarding prisons and the possibility of arresting a few inmates, two major private prison companies, the CoreCivic (CXW.N) and the GEO Group, have been looking at alternatives to incarceration, including remote monitoring as an ongoing source of revenue. , according to recent conference call records.
About 164,000 immigrants are currently in separate detention plans, according to ICE data, nearly double the total on September 30, 2020, before Biden took over. Officials are asking Congress to get support for up to 400,000 subscribers, reported last week.
BI was awarded a $ 2.2 billion state contract by 2020 to manage these programs, according to government contract records. CoreCivic opposed the contract, saying it had proposed a lower level of service, according to a report by the US government that followed – a sign of growing competition in the remote monitoring market.
In his first year in office, Biden faced a series of high-level cross-border attempts, which have become the offensive line for anti-immigrant republics in the run-up to the November 8 general election.
While the COVID-19 community health directive at the border allows officials to quickly deport the majority of illegal immigrants, thousands are still entering the country to pursue immigrant claims. Older asylum seekers will be among the few hundred immigrants in the driver’s detention program, which will be tested in Houston and Baltimore, according to an ICE invitation recently sent to law enforcement agencies and reviewed.
Immigration advocates oppose the ankle bracelets and other precautionary measures increase the risk of xenophobia without compromising their incarceration.
Biden authorities are reinstating three federal family detention centers to detain only adults, adds ICE invitation. But two of those centers in Texas are owned by CoreCivic and GEO Group, which will continue to operate.
“It is the right move,” said Jacinta Gonzalez, a campaigner for the Mijente campaign, an organization representing immigrants. “[But] the idea was to shut them down, not to change them.”