US To Announce Overhaul Of Immigration Detention


The New York Times says the Obama administration will announce an ambitious plan today to overhaul the much-criticized way the nation detains immigration violators, trying to transform it from a patchwork of jail and prison cells to what its new chief called a “truly civil detention system.” Officials will review the federal government's contracts with more than 350 local jails and private prisons, with an eye toward consolidating many detainees in places more suitable for noncriminals facing deportation – some possibly in centers run by the government.

The plan aims to establish more centralized authority over the system, which holds about 400,000 immigration detainees over the course of a year, and more direct oversight of detention centers that have come under fire for mistreatment of detainees and substandard – sometimes fatal – medical care. “We're trying to move away from 'one size fits all,' ” said one Immigration and Customs Enforcement official.

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