As the Trump administration continues into its third year, the number of ICE detainments continues to rise. This has been largely perpetuated by anti-immigrant sentiment from the current administration, as well as an increased emphasis on security concerns around immigration.
More Frequent Detention
Under the Trump administration, detention of immigrants has risen across the board. This also extends to include immigrants and United States residents with clean criminal records. In addition to the increased number of ICE detainees with a clean record, statistics also show that 18% of the 44,435 individuals detained by ICE so far under the Trump administration had resided continuously in the U.S. for ten years or more, and that one out of four had been in the country for at least five years.
As detention increases, more and more people are being falsely arrested on the grounds of border and immigration control. Trump’s administration continues to further anti-immigrant sentiment throughout the nation, prompting more arrests to be made. This has resulted in a general increased presence of immigration officers throughout the nation, often with frightening results for both immigrants and American citizens.
Increased ICE Presence In Public Spaces
As more people are being detained by ICE, immigration and border patrol agents are becoming a more common sight in what were previously uncommon locations. Road checkpoints have become a more common sight, and there have been increasing number of reports of ICE agents on public transportation asking for proof of citizenship. Even those with appropriate documentation are not always safe in these cases; recently, a comedian was detained while on a bus, despite having documentation of a legal work visa. The United States is one of the busiest countries in terms of road traffic with about 218 million drivers holding a valid driving license, meaning this shift is likely to impact millions across the nation.
Additionally, immigration officers have started appearing in local courts, attempting to track down immigrants by making use of the court system. Those seeking legal action, as a result, may have to face arrest or deportation in the process. This is just one of many public institutions that have seen an increased presence of immigration officers, making daily life more difficult for immigrants that may have previously not had issue with their United States residence.
What This May Mean For U.S. Immigrants Everywhere
With no end to this increase in sight, even legal U.S. immigrants may face challenges in the years ahead. Some immigrants and legal U.S. residents have, in recent months, been challenged or even arrested for mundane things like speaking a foreign language on U.S. soil. While the officers responsible for these sorts of false arrests do sometimes face legal action as a result, it’s likely that many Americans will continue to have reason for worry and anger as long as these practices persist. The American Immigration Council reports that as many as 10% of the people living in some states are either immigrants or the children of immigrants, and for this American demographic, Trump’s administration will continue to cause daily struggle.