Immigrants and supporters from around Wisconsin including Milwaukee are expected to march from Milwaukee’s Southside to the Milwaukee County Court House in protest of Milwaukee County Sheriff Clarke’s decision to join the 287g ICE program.
By H. Nelson Goodson
Hispanic News Network U.S.A.
February 9, 2017
Milwaukee, WI – On Thursday when contacted by Hispanic News Network U.S.A. (HNNUSA), Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke Jr. released a very brief statement concerning the upcoming immigrant march organized and sponsored by Voces de la Frontera (VDLF), an immigrant and worker rights organization in an attempt to stop Sheriff Clark Jr. from joining the 287g ICE program. The 287g ICE program will allow designated law enforcement officers, deputy sheriffs and state police to be trained to enforce federal immigration laws once Governor Scott Walker (R) approves the ICE partnership. Will the “Day Without Latinos, Immigrants and Refugees” march actually have en affect on Sheriff Clarke Jr.? Sheriff Clarke Jr. released the following statement, the march “means nothing to me. The rule of law will prevail.”
According to Sheriff Clarke Jr., he plans to implement the 287g ICE program in the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office. In 2012, Sheriff Clarke Jr. did confirm that the county jail has been in an agreement for the last five years with the feds to hold illegal immigrants under the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program and the county was reinburse about $135,000 in 2009. In 2008, the county received at least $60,000 under the program, according to Sheriff Clarke Jr.
Under the above agreement, the MCSO has to check the legal status of everyone they suspect is an illegal alien and report their results to ICE. On Monday, February 13, multiple Latino businesses will close to allow their employees to join the VDLF sponsored march. The march costs VDLF at least between $5K to $15K for permits and police escort depending on the size of the march.
VDLF hasn’t released any information what will be their next step to attempt to stop Sheriff Clarke Jr. from implementing 287g ICE program, if the march fails to persuade him to change his mind. Which he already stated that the march won’t matter to him.
In brief, the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Office generates at least $6M in holding ICE detainees, which the jail hold 1K inmates. Holding ICE detainees has become a lucrative business for private prisons and county jails.
Former President Barack H. Obama, aka, the “Deporter in Chief” deported nearly 3M undocumented immigrants within 8-years. Up to now, Obama holds the record from any prior U.S. President for deporting more undocumented immigrants while in office.
What does it actually mean for the private corporate sector? It seems that President Donald Trump favors the proliferation of private corporate prisons to hold detainees as a lucrative business. Trump wants for local, county and state law enforcement agencies around the U.S. to implement 287g to detain all criminal undocumented immigrant’s convicted of crimes.
On Wednesday, Guadalupe Garcia de Rayos, 36, became the first convicted undocumented immigrant to face deportation in Arizona under Trump’s executive order to deport criminal aliens. In 2009, De Rayos was convicted of felony identify theft and working illegally. She had live in the Phoenix area for 21 years and leaves a daughter and son behind. Both are U.S. born citizens. De Rayos was deported to Nogales, Mexico.
Obama attempted to phase out private prisons, but failed. According to a 2015 report by the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, Private Prison Corporations (PPC’s) earned $3B for holding ICE detainees. An estimated 34,000 of undocumented immigrants are incarcerated daily costing about $159 each to hold.
States do pay for most of the costs to hold undocumented detainees from their jurisdictions and the federal government reimburse the states about half.
The L.A. Times reported in 2015, that to hold ICE detainees in a private prison, it costs between $130 to $330 daily (per day) compared to being place under electronic monitoring bracelet for low risk detainees, which cost $5.00 daily ($155 per month). Electronic bracelet monitoring in some states is also done by BI Inc., a subsidiary of the second largest PPC in the country.
In 2015, 9,300 undocumented immigrants were released under parole or monitoring. Also, 70,000 of detainees were charged criminally for illegal entry or re-entry, which made half of all federal prosecutions.
PPC includes the GEO Group, the 6th largest private prison operation, which operates 95 prisons in the U.S. and abroad and the Corrections Corporation of America, which operates 67 prisons in the U.S., according to a 2016 report by the Memphis Flyer.
Why hasn’t the U.S. Congress actually passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill?, simply because PPC’s have spent more than $24M per year in lobbying costs to keep private prisons in operation. If tomorrow, a comprehensive immigration reform bill would pass, PPC’s would definitely go out of business because less undocumented detainees would be in prisons, some might argue.