Welcome to AccessDenied: A Conversation on Unauthorized Im/migration and Health! The aim of this blog is to challenge readers and contributors to re-think the political common sense that denies migrants and immigrants access to health care and impedes their capacity to enjoy the social determinants of good health. We also consider how the increased movement of people across national borders affects the health of receiving communities.
We ask our readers and contributors to consider some morally and politically tough questions:
- The Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that Immigration and Customs Enforcement has neglected to report 28 allegations of sexual assault across 10 selected facilities.
- The University of Texas chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas planned – and then was pressured into canceling – a game mocking immigration enforcement it titled “Catch an Illegal Immigrant.”
Job Announcement: Tenure-track position in the Anthropology of Global Health and Human Rights at the University of Connecticut
AccessDenied readers may be interested in the following position announcement:
The University of Connecticut has initiated a search for a tenure-track assistant professor of anthropology specializing in the anthropology of global health and human rights. The position will be a joint appointment between UConn’s Department of Anthropology and Human Rights Institute. The position announcement, with full details, is accessible online at https://academicjobsonline.org/ajo/jobs/3626. Candidates are urged to apply by December 6, 2013.
- In a conscious rejection of the recommendations made in a government-commissioned review, Border Patrol Chief Mike Fisher announced that Border Patrol agents will continue to be allowed to use deadly force against rock-throwers and assailants in vehicles.
- The Obama administration released a long-awaited memo establishing that undocumented residents who are close relatives of active military troops and veterans will be able to receive work permits to stay in the U.S. and move toward permanent residency.
- In Alabama, civil rights groups reached an agreement with state officials to permanently block the most extreme parts of the state’s 2011 anti-immigrant bill.
- President Obama renewed his call for House Republicans to take up comprehensive immigration reform. In response, the New York Times editorial board wrote an (appropriately) scathing piece demanding “not one more” deportation and terming the administration’s deportation practices a “continuing disaster.” Read more…
- On October 8, eight Democratic members of the House of Representatives were arrested outside the Capitol building during a protest to support comprehensive immigration legislation.
- Sonia Nazario, author of Enrique’s Journey: The Story of a Boy’s Dangerous Odyssey to Reunite with his Mother, writes that U.S. immigration policy has been at the root of much family separation, both by driving family members to immigrate separately and by deliberately deporting parents without their children.
- ThinkProgress posted a “simple guide to the Affordable Care Act” for non-citizens with varying levels of access to ACA-provided care. Read more…
In a previous AccessDenied post, I considered how the institutional culture of the U.S. Border Patrol often neglects the medical needs of migrants. Despite policies calling for “humane treatment,” agents regularly destroy humanitarian water bottles in the desert, allow overcrowding in detention, deny medications, and commit acts of physical violence. Moreover, as Seth Holmes writes in a recent post, the Border Patrol’s stated policy of “prevention through deterrence,” which aims to deter future migration by making the journey north as difficult as possible, is inhumane.
As the agency predicted, and as Holmes notes, the increase in Border Patrol personnel and surveillance since 1994 has forced migration routes into the remote desert, increasing suffering. Read more…
- Migrants entering the U.S. are increasingly crossing through southern Texas, where many die trying to circumvent a Border Patrol checkpoint in Brooks County. Last year, the toll of recovered remains in the county skyrocketed to 129 bodies, up from 50 or 60 in previous years.
- Migration is shifting along multiple vectors, as Mexico is increasingly an immigrant destination and the number of unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. appears to be on the rise.
- In an investigation of excessive force cases, the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General found that “many [Border Patrol] agents and officers do not understand use of force and the extent to which they may or may not use force.” Read more…