Putting TRAC to Work
  News Organizations
Al Jazeera America
April 13, 2014

¿Sí se puede? Obama’s deportation legacy: Quota driven immigration dragnet is the Democratic Party's latest Latino problem
By Tanya Golash-Boza

Last week the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), a research organization at Syracuse University, issued a damning report on the criminal convictions of deportees, providing data that was not previously available. The report, which analyzed 2.3 million deportations by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) from 2008 to 2013, found that less than half these deportees had criminal convictions. Moreover, it noted that most of these convictions were minor. “ICE currently uses an exceedingly broad definition of criminal behavior: Even very minor infractions are included,” the report said. “Only 12 percent of all deportees had been found to have committed a serious or “Level 1” offense based on the agency’s own definitions.” It is time for Obama to use his executive authority to create a deportation policy that is smart not only in name but in reality. In other words, half of all deportees had no criminal record whatsoever, and large numbers of criminal deportations involved people with traffic offenses. “For example, anyone with a traffic ticket for exceeding the speed limit on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway who sends in their check to pay their fine has just entered ICE’s ‘convicted criminal’ category,” the report added. “If the same definitions were applied to every citizen — rather than just to noncitizens — available evidence suggests that the majority of U.S. citizens would be considered convicted criminals.”

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
Copyright 2014
TRAC TRAC at Work TRAC TRAC at Work News Organizations News Organizations