The Obama administration faces daunting challenges in trying to improve detention conditions for accused illegal immigrants, starting with greater oversight of places like a facility at Eloy, Az., run by Corrections Corporation of America, reports the New York Times. “The rampant problems of medical and mental health care aren't just going to go away if there's more oversight,” said David Shapiro of the American Civil Liberties Union National Prison Project, which has called for legally binding rules on conditions in immigration detention. “There have to be consequences.”
The administration's three-to-five-year goal is a vastly different detention system, no smaller in size but less penal in character than the current sprawling mix of jail and prison cells. At the same time, Janet Napolitano, secretary of homeland security, is expanding immigration enforcement. For now, officials said they would continue to rely on the same prison companies and county jails to house people facing possible deportation for immigration violations. The Times explores in detail a problematic case from Eloy.