GEO Group headquarters in Boca Raton, Florida (Wikipedia Commons)
Following the shift from family separation to indefinite family detention, Trump’s cruel immigration policies are continuing to come under significant pressure in the streets, in the media, and in the courts. Media reports and immigrant rights organizations have begun to identify and pressure the private profiteers behind the immigrant detention apparatus, including private prison companies like Geo Group and CoreCivic; ICE contractors like Microsoft; military contractors like General Dynamics; and banks that provide financing for private prisons like Wells Fargo, among others. (Here is something we wrote a few weeks ago on the different categories of profiteers that shows the different ways corporations are profiting from Trump’s “zero-tolerance” policies.)
While some elected officials are calling for the abolition of ICE and supporting policies to end immigrant detention, many more take money from companies that have a vested interest in immigrant detention continuing. Organizers across the country are beginning to identify these elected officials to put pressure on them to return donations from detention and deportation profiteers and to fully distance themselves from entire machinery that is attacking immigrant families. (Here is something else we wrote that looks at the problem of elected officials accepting donations from immigrant detention profiteers, as well as a few examples of these kinds of politicians).
Last week we hosted a online training to share some tips and tricks on how to research iwhether your congressperson, senator, or governor has accepted donations from private prison companies and other immigrant detention profiteers. We recorded the training – which you can see below – so that more people could watch it and learn how to identify elected officials taking money from immigrant detention profiteers.
We’re hoping to help organize a crowd-sourced research project that will allow different activists and researchers across the US to combine together their findings on local elected officials who take money from immigrant detention profiteers. If you’re interested in joining this project to map out these politicians across the entire country so they can be held accountable, please contact us at [email protected]