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January 18, 2017

The US doesn’t have an immigration problem—it has a refugee problem
By Ana Campoy

A US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) spokesman said the agency “strives to treat every person we encounter with dignity and respect.” Anyone with concerns about the treatment doled out by its officers can call the agency, he added. Unequal treatment? There is also evidence that suggests immigrants are not getting equal treatment once their cases reach the courts. For example, immigration judge Agnelis Reese, in Oakdale, Louisiana, didn’t grant a single asylum request out of the 169 decisions she made during fiscal years 2011-2016, according to data compiled by Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse. Meanwhile, judge Frederic Leeds, in New York, approved 98% of the 700 cases or so he handled. Indeed, a statistical analysis by the US’s Government Accountability Office confirms that, even when controlling for a variety of factors, asylum grant rates vary widely—by at least 47 percentage points—from judge to judge.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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