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Reading Between the Lines: Need to Know’s “Crossing the Line” Suggests a Reexamination of the Border Patrol’s Culture – Rachel Stonecipher

January 24, 2013 Leave a comment

Rachel Stonecipher

SMU

In 2012, a series of PBS investigations into Border Patrol abuses corroborated years of humanitarian volunteers’ reports, finding that the agency’s institutional culture cultivates a climate of medical neglect – and sometimes outright harm – toward migrant detainees. In July 2012, the PBS show Need to Know aired the second installment of its U.S.-Mexico border series “Crossing the Line,” an investigation into abuses of migrants in Border Patrol custody. The program reported that agents in the Tucson Sector, the busiest of nine regional divisions of the Border Patrol on the U.S.-Mexico border, have been accused of thousands of physical, verbal, and sexual abuses against migrants who are usually deported before they can report the crimes. “Crossing the Line, part 2” focused on the problem of poor treatment during detention, while Part I addressed agents’ excessive use of force. In light of my own research with humanitarian volunteers,[1] the two programs prove the frequency and injuriousness of abuse. Although PBS stops short of claiming that the Border Patrol’s “war on illegal immigration” actually promotes harm against migrants, to some volunteers’ dismay (including my own), “Crossing the Line” effectively conveys that abuse is an institutional problem that takes direct and indirect forms – including impunity.

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News Round Up In-Brief

September 25, 2011 Leave a comment

U.S. News

Why Structural Vulnerability? Why Latino Migrants in the United States? – James Quesada

September 17, 2011 Leave a comment

James Quesada
San Francisco State University

Why propose another concept that appears to be a variation on a well-established theme … social suffering, the social production of disease and distress, the effects of violence of all kinds upon people and communities throughout the world? And why select a particular population like Latino migrants to represent how insidious and gripping structural vulnerability can be to one’s health and livelihood?

In a special issue of the journal Medical Anthropology, “Structural Vulnerability: Latino Migrants in the United States,” [1] the social science concept of structural vulnerability is introduced and put to use by medical anthropologists familiar with the plight of Latino migrants in the United States. Structural vulnerability refers to one’s position in social hierarchies that imposes physical-emotional suffering on specific population groups and individuals in patterned ways. Read more…

News Round Up In-Brief

U.S. News

  • The Obama administration made a statement last week that it will focus its deportation efforts on those who represent “the greatest harm” to the US such as criminals. The implication is that enforcement will not focus on low priority populations such as otherwise law-abiding immigrants who came to the US as children and immigrants serving in the military. Immigrant advocates and enforcement advocates debate the meaning of the new statement. Read about it here, here, and here.
  • Church leaders in Alabama sue the state over its new immigration law. The suit claims that the law criminalizes parts of Christian ministry such as performing weddings and funerals for illegal immigrants, giving them rides, or inviting them to church services. This suit joins other legal challenges to the law from civil rights groups, the American Civil Liberties Union, and the Justice Department.
  • A little known component of U.S. border enforcement—the practice of U.S. Border Patrol Agents inspecting buses and asking for papers from people crossing the border into Mexico—may have unintended consequences. Read more…

News Round Up In-Brief

US News

News Round Up In-Brief

September 27, 2010 Leave a comment

AccessDenied has added this new feature in order to keep our readers informed of news items and reports from around the web on unauthorized im/migration and health.

If you have items you would like us to include, please email: contactaccessdenied@gmail.com.

  • The Dream Act is bipartisan legislation that creates a path to citizenship for an estimated 65,000 undocumented immigrants who graduate from US high schools.  The Dream Act was blocked from going to a vote this week in the Senate.  This web portal lists all recent news coverage on the act.

News Round Up In-Brief

September 17, 2010 Leave a comment

AccessDenied has added this new feature in order to keep our readers informed of news items and reports from around the web on unauthorized im/migration and health.

If you have items you would like us to include, please email: contactaccessdenied@gmail.com.

This week election coverage dominated the news in the US.  Below are some pieces about immigration policy in the US: