Putting TRAC to Work
  Legal and Scholarly
Syracuse University
May 11, 2021

Facts matter in immigration debate, and SUís TRAC collects them (Guest opinion)
By Lily Datz | Syracuse University student

The immigration debate is typically waged without facts. Our community should be aware of a unique resource we have locally. At Syracuse University, the Transactional Research Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) provides the information necessary to fill the knowledge gap we are seeing in our community and across the country. TRAC serves a vital and non-partisan role in researching immigration at a national level. By filing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests each month, TRAC is granted access to government immigration records from the Department of Justice. Records cover everything from immigration court hearings to the number of migrants detained at the U.S.-Mexico border. Researchers at TRAC then sift through the records, compiling the most important data into accessible online research tools. TRACís work in the immigration sphere is at a scale of importance unlike any other institution in the nation. TRAC is featured daily in national stories about immigration, from The New York Times, to Time, Vice, and Fox News, playing an essential role for journalists covering current immigration issues. The nationís leading clearinghouse for immigration data is quite literally in our own backyard, so as a community we need not remain uninformed about the realities of immigration. To discuss immigration productively, we must use factual evidence to tangibly discuss the effects of policy on real human beings. It is a matter of life and death.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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