In the same way, mass shootings are now the norm in the United States; the same could be said about deaths among undocumented people in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody. But we should always remember, these are real people that are dying. They each have a story and they all matter.
Unfortunately, the information about each death that has occurred within ICE custody isn’t as readily available as it should be. We attempted to locate each individual that died this year alone (and not the fiscal year which began on Oct. 2018) while being detained in immigration detention centers. In response to our inquiry about migrant deaths in ICE custody, ICE sent us reports for the fiscal year beginning in October 2018 until the present. However, the report shows only three deaths since the start of the year. The link to the report they provided does not include deaths of children or other deaths.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) also released a lengthy report about deaths within ICE custody and they report, that to date, “31 immigrants, including at least seven children, have died in immigration custody during the Trump administration.”
Our research includes undocumented men, women, and children that were held in detention centers across the country at the time of their death. Here’s what we found.