Sunlight-is-the-best-disinfectant Dep’t

Letting ICE monitor its own detention facilities turned out to be a bad idea. Some heads should roll.

Since 2003, at least 103 detainees have died in facilities run by, or on contract to, ICE. The New York Times and the ACLU have now used the Freedom of Information Act to obtain some of the department’s internal records, which show – unsurprisingly – much more interest in covering up wrongdoing than in preventing needless deaths.  According to the Times report, officials deliberately lied to reporters to help with the cover-up. If Nina Dozoretz really can’t recall participating in discussions during 2007 about a man whose skull was fractured in detention and who subsequently died, perhaps she needs some rest, and ICE needs someone else to fix the detainee health-care problem.  The heads of the lying spokegeeks should roll, too.  In any case, it’s clear that ICE can’t be trusted on this, and needs a strong external monitor.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact:

2 thoughts on “Sunlight-is-the-best-disinfectant Dep’t”

  1. "Sunlight," "disinfectant"…must be about the health care legislation. Alas, it is not. Apparantly, monumental health care legislation affecting every American, like fungi, is best cultivated in the dark.

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