Immigration

Series

Zero Tolerance

Trump’s Immigration Policy at the Border

Trapped In Gangland

How the MS-13 Crackdown Shattered Immigrant Lives

No Sanctuary

The Unshackling of ICE

The Travel Ban

The Impact of Trump’s Executive Order

Stories

While Trump Cracked Down on Immigration, a Republican Megadonor Sued for a Special Visa

Shipping supplies billionaires Richard and Elizabeth Uihlein frequently back “America First” candidates and causes. When it comes to their own company, it’s a different matter.

Pharmaceutical Companies Are Luring Mexicans Across the U.S. Border to Donate Blood Plasma

Companies offer high payments and bring-a-friend bonuses to Mexicans who cross the border on temporary visas to donate blood plasma. The U.S. offers weaker health protections for donors than most countries.

En una Disputa sobre Tutela, los Hijos de un Padre Hispanohablante se Quedarán con sus Padres de Acogida Eslovacohablantes

El caso es un ejemplo que pone en duda si el Departamento de Servicios para Niños y Familias de Illinois sirve adecuadamente a familias hispanohablantes y cumple con el decreto Burgos de la corte federal.

In a Disputed Custody Case, the Children of a Spanish-Speaking Father Will Remain With Their Slovak-Speaking Foster Parents

The case is one example that questions whether the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services adequately serves Spanish-speaking families and lives up to the Burgos federal court consent decree.

The Administration Rushed on a Sweeping Immigration Policy. We Found Substantive, Sloppy Mistakes.

Trump’s new immigration policy applies more harshly to families of U.S. citizens in the military than to families of noncitizens in the military. Experts think it’s an error that suggests officials are pushing policies even they don’t fully understand.

“Dirtbag,” “Savages,” “Subhuman”: A Border Agent’s Hateful Career and the Crime That Finally Ended It

Border Patrol agent Matthew Bowen had been investigated for years before he used his 4,000-pound truck to assault a fleeing migrant.

The Case That Made an Ex-ICE Attorney Realize the Government Was Relying on False “Evidence” Against Migrants

Years after quitting her job as an attorney for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Laura Peña returned to the fight — defending migrants she’d once prosecuted. Then, a perplexing family separation case forced her to call upon everything she’d learned.

Un agente de la Patrulla Fronteriza revela la realidad de ser guardia de niños migrantes

Con la agencia siendo blanco de críticas por mantener a niños detenidos en condiciones deplorables, y por los comentarios racistas y misóginos publicados en Facebook, uno de sus agentes habla de cómo es realmente desempeñar su trabajo. “En algún momento la gente solo comenzó a aceptar lo que está sucediendo como una cosa normal”.

A Border Patrol Agent Reveals What It’s Really Like to Guard Migrant Children

With the agency under fire for holding children in deplorable conditions and over racist and misogynistic Facebook posts, one agent speaks about what it’s like to do his job. “Somewhere down the line people just accepted what’s going on as normal.”

Revelations About a Secret Facebook Group Spawn Investigation of 70 Current and Former Border Patrol Employees

Top officials with Customs and Border Protection said the investigation was prompted by revelations that agents had posted racist and misogynistic Facebook memes. But they declined to say whether any top officials have been suspended from duty.

Border Patrol Official Circulates Article That Deems Our Reporting on Secret Facebook Group a Threat

An official who directs a Border Patrol intelligence gathering center sent the article to all top intelligence officials and field offices. The article directly attacks a ProPublica reporter who revealed that agents were posting anti-migrant and misogynistic memes in group for current and former agents.

Border Patrol Agents Are Passing Around A Commemorative Coin Mocking Care for Migrant Kids

The coin declares “KEEP THE CARAVANS COMING” under an image of a parade of migrants crossing the border.

Inmigrantes Menores Enviados a Albergues de Chicago Están Traumatizados y Enfermos, a veces con Varicela o Tuberculosis

Cientos de menores están siendo detenidos en albergues operados por Heartland Human Care Services, en donde dicen haber hecho cambios a raíz de las acusaciones por negligencia y maltrato a niños.

Border Patrol Condemns Secret Facebook Group, but Reveals Few Specifics

The agency won’t say how many employees have been disciplined or warned in the ongoing scandal over offensive social media posts.

Immigration Officials Use Secretive Gang Databases to Deny Migrant Asylum Claims

The information in the databases comes from foreign police and militaries, and it is being used to detain migrants and separate them from their children. Legal experts and human rights advocates say they were not told about the databases and question their reliability.

En un grupo secreto en Facebook, agentes de la Patrulla Fronteriza se burlan de inmigrantes muertos y publican memes sexistas

En este grupo creado hace tres años y con aproximadamente 9,500 miembros, se compartieron comentarios despectivos sobre las legisladores latinas que planearon visitar un polémico centro de detención en Texas, llamándolas “escorias” y “putas”.

Investigation of Secret Border Patrol Group Launched as New Degrading Facebook Posts Surface

A ProPublica story revealing demeaning posts directed at Latina lawmakers prompted widespread revulsion. Immigration officials said such comments violate the agency’s code of conduct and promised that violators will be held accountable.

Inside the Secret Border Patrol Facebook Group Where Agents Joke About Migrant Deaths and Post Sexist Memes

The three-year-old group, which has roughly 9,500 members, shared derogatory comments about Latina lawmakers who plan to visit a controversial Texas detention facility on Monday, calling them “scum buckets” and “hoes.”

ACLU Sues Pennsylvania State Police, Alleging They’ve Overstepped in Acting as Immigration Authorities

A federal lawsuit filed on behalf of 10 Latino plaintiffs by the ACLU echoes findings in an investigation published last year by ProPublica and The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Years Ago, the Border Patrol’s Discipline System Was Denounced as “Broken.” It’s Still Not Fixed.

An expert panel’s pleas for swifter, more consistent, more transparent punishment of rogue agents languish.

Over 200 Allegations of Abuse of Migrant Children; 1 Case of Homeland Security Disciplining Someone

A federal judge found the department’s own records disturbing and ordered the names of the accused agents made public. Now, DHS has taken its fight against doing so to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Una de las pediatras que atendió a niños inmigrantes describe un patrón de brechas en la atención médica proporcionada en los albergues

¿Qué tan preparada está la administración de Trump para la corriente de menores no acompañados en la frontera? Una queja nueva señala que los albergues en Nueva Jersey ya habían fallado al no responder adecuadamente cuando tuvieron niños lastimados o enfermos.

Pediatrician Who Treated Immigrant Children Describes Pattern of Lapses in Medical Care in Shelters

How prepared is the Trump administration for an influx of unaccompanied minors at the border? A new complaint shows shelters in New Jersey were already failing to respond when kids got hurt or sick.

Zero Tolerance: Inside the Secretive Network of Immigrant Youth Shelters in Illinois

Here is all of ProPublica Illinois’ local reporting on the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy.

Trapped in a Deadly Chase

Border Patrol’s High-Speed Pursuits Often End in Gruesome Crashes

Atrapados en persecuciones mortales

Las persecuciones a alta velocidad de la Patrulla Fronteriza a menudo terminan en choques terribles

If Trump’s Border Wall Becomes Reality, Here’s How He Could Easily Get Private Land for It

A law is supposed to protect property owners from lowball offers by the government when it takes land through eminent domain. But a letter shows how simple it is for officials to eviscerate what is already a pretty toothless law.

Después de la controversia, Heartland va a cerrar cuatro albergues para jóvenes inmigrantes en Illinois

Al mismo tiempo, otro operador de albergues está intentando expandir su presencia en Chicago.

After Controversy, Heartland to Close Four Illinois Shelters for Immigrant Youth

At the same time, another shelter operator is trying to expand its footprint in Chicago.

Senators Demand Investigation Into Sexual Abuse at Immigrant Children’s Shelters

Sens. Charles Grassley and Dianne Feinstein said they are particularly concerned that allegations of sexual assault of unaccompanied minors aren’t being properly investigated.

Despite Trump’s Tough Talk About Migrant Smugglers, He’s Undercut Efforts to Stop Them

ICE has shifted manpower and money away from more complex investigations to support the administration’s push to arrest, detain and deport undocumented immigrants.

A pesar de sus duras palabras contra traficantes de migrantes, Trump ha socavado esfuerzos para frenarles

ICE ha transferido personal y dinero de investigaciones más complejas para respaldar la campaña de la administración de arrestar, encarcelar y deportar a los inmigrantes ilegales.

The Lucky Ones

Nearly 30 years after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border as an undocumented child, a reporting trip brought me back to that very stretch. The memories followed.

Pennsylvania Police Now Limited in Flagging Undocumented Immigrants to ICE

The state police just implemented a policy banning some of the most egregious behavior exposed in an investigation last year by ProPublica and The Philadelphia Inquirer, which raised questions of racial profiling and unlawful arrest.

Former MS-13 Member Who Secretly Helped Police Is Deported

An immigration judge said he was “very sympathetic” to the teenager who cooperated with authorities only to be jailed with those he informed on. The judge nonetheless rejected his plea for asylum.

Long Island Schools Move to Curb Police Role in Detaining Immigrant Students

In response to our story about a student who was detained and deported after drawing a doodle of his school mascot, the Huntington district is seeking a countywide agreement to rein in school-based police officers.

Can the U.S. Military Build a Border Wall Even as It Struggles to Rebuild Itself?

President Donald Trump has floated the idea that the military build his much-touted border wall. Tonight, the idea might become reality.

Para un niño inmigrante, ¿cómo resulta vislumbrar el sueño americano para que luego se lo arrebaten?

La política de cero tolerancia de la administración de Trump separó a padres de sus hijos, colocando a estos en hogares de crianza en los que probaron una vida mucho mejor que la que dejaron en sus países. ¿Qué sucede cuando regresan a casa?

The Hunted

What happens when you say no to MS-13.

What’s It Like for an Immigrant Child to Have a Glimpse of the American Dream, Then Have It Taken Away?

The Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy separated kids and parents, putting the children in foster care, where many of them got a taste of a life much better than the one they left. What happens when they land back home?

He Drew His School Mascot — and ICE Labeled Him a Gang Member

How high schools have embraced the Trump administration’s crackdown on MS-13, and destroyed immigrant students’ American dreams.

Salvadoran Girl Whose Cries Highlighted the Cruelty of Family Separation Policy Embraces New Life

After she was separated from her mother at the border, 6-year-old Alison Jimena Valencia Madrid was recorded begging to make a phone call over the sobs of other children. A video shows how she and her mom are coping with their life in Texas.

En los albergues para menores inmigrantes, los casos de agresión sexual se abren y cierran en un dos por tres

En distintos lugares del país, niños denuncian casos de agresión sexual en los albergues para menores inmigrantes. Alex decidió dar a conocer su situación cuando informó en el albergue que dos adolescentes mayores que él lo arrastraron a uno de los dormitorios. El incidente quedó grabado en un video de vigilancia, pero su caso nunca fue investigado. Alex no es el único.

In Immigrant Children’s Shelters, Sexual Assault Cases Are Open and Shut

Across the country, kids are reporting sexual assaults in immigrant children’s shelters. Alex decided to come forward. He told the shelter two older teens dragged him into a bedroom. There was surveillance video. But Alex's case wasn't investigated. His isn’t the only one.

6-Year-Old Separated From His Father Tells Judge He Wants to Go Home

The Salvadoran boy who appeared alone in immigration court last month returned this week with his father’s lawyer in tow. The law puts the decision to return to his family in his small hands.

Agency Policing Tent City for Immigrant Kids Lacks Experience Investigating Sex Crimes Involving Children

The Federal Protective Service, which primarily secures federal buildings, has been charged with responding to incidents at the shelter with 2,800 immigrant children in Tornillo, Texas.

Government Reverses Course, Sending 4-Year-Old Boy Back to His Father

More than 11 weeks after separating a young Salvadoran boy from his father and claiming, without evidence, that his father was a gang member, the Department of Homeland Security returned the boy.

Todavía hay familias que están siendo separadas en la frontera, meses después de haberse revocado la “cero tolerancia”

Algunos abogados de inmigración comentan que los agentes fronterizos han vuelto a separar a menores de sus padres, con la explicación de querer protegerlos en contra de padres y madres delincuentes. Quienes abogan por la inmigración dicen que eso es solo una denominación nueva para la cero tolerancia.

Un encausado se presenta solo al tribunal de inmigración. Tiene 6 años de edad.

Wilder Hilario Maldonado Cabrera fue el compareciente más joven de la lista de casos juveniles de ese día; también era uno de los últimos menores que aún seguía bajo custodia del gobierno en virtud de haber sido afectado por la política de cero tolerancia.

Families Are Still Being Separated at the Border, Months After “Zero Tolerance” Was Reversed

Immigration lawyers say border agents are again removing children from their parents. The explanation? They’re protecting kids from criminal dads and moms. Immigration advocates say it’s zero tolerance by another name.

A Defendant Shows Up in Immigration Court by Himself. He’s 6.

Wilder Hilario Maldonado Cabrera was the youngest defendant on the juvenile docket that day, and he was one of the last children left in government custody who had been affected by the zero-tolerance policy.

Do You Know a Student Who Was Detained by ICE After Getting in Trouble at School? Tell us.

Help us report on school discipline policies that have led to deportations.

¿Conoces a un estudiante que fue detenido por ICE después de tener problemas en la escuela? Cuéntanos.

Ayúdanos a reportear sobre políticas de disciplina escolar que hayan desencadenado deportaciones.

Even in Philadelphia, One of the Most Determined Sanctuary Cities, Refuge Is Elusive

The city has wielded policy to fight back against Trump and ICE, but in the background, some public employees have quietly cooperated with immigration enforcement agents.

Los Desaparecidos

La policía de Long Island dio como fugitivos de sus hogares a adolescentes inmigrantes perdidos. Una de las madres presintió que algo andaba mal y buscó las respuestas en los campos de matanza de la MS-13.

“Humanitarian Crisis” Looms as Arizona Threatens to Revoke Immigrant Children Shelter Licenses

The state says Southwest Key displayed a “flippant attitude” after sexual abuse reports. But can the federal government survive without the largest operator of immigrant children shelters as Trump policies put the system near capacity?

The Disappeared

Police on Long Island wrote off missing immigrant teens as runaways. One mother knew better — and searched MS-13’s killing fields for answers.

Authorities Can Now Deny Visa and Green Card Applications Without Giving Applicants a Chance to Fix Errors

Immigration lawyers call the policy change, which kicks in today, another brick in Trump’s “invisible wall” to make legal immigration as difficult as possible.

Esto es lo que pasó a los 99 niños inmigrantes separados de sus padres y enviados a Chicago

Documentos confidenciales revelan detalles sobre los problemas para encontrar a los padres y las experiencias traumáticas durante la política de tolerancia cero de la administración Trump.

Here’s What Happened to the 99 Immigrant Children Separated From Their Parents and Sent to Chicago

Confidential records reveal details about struggles to find parents and traumatic experiences during the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance crackdown.

Mientras pasan los meses en albergues de Chicago, menores migrantes contemplan fugarse y hasta suicidarse

Documentos internos revelan la desesperación y el tedio en una de las más grandes redes de refugios para menores en la nación.

Did Three Immigrant Teens Run Away From a Chicago Shelter Last Month?

Yes, but you wouldn’t know it if we relied solely on the agency paid to protect thousands of unaccompanied immigrant children in Illinois.

As Months Pass in Chicago Shelters, Immigrant Children Contemplate Escape, Even Suicide

Internal documents reveal despair and tedium in one of the nation’s largest shelter networks for unaccompanied minors.

Trabajador acusado de abusar sexualmente a ocho menores de edad en albergue para inmigrantes

Alegatos en contra de un cuidador de menores son lo último en una serie de acusaciones serias de abuso sexual en los albergues del gobierno para jóvenes inmigrantes.

Informes revelan supervisión “laxa,” actividad sexual en centros de acogida de niños inmigrantes en Chicago

Documentos recientemente obtenidos aportan detalles sobre incidentes preocupantes, incluyendo a menores teniendo relaciones sexuales en una sala de televisión y la huida de dos niñas durante una excursión a un museo.

Worker Charged With Sexually Molesting Eight Children at Immigrant Shelter

The allegations against the Southwest Key youth care worker are the latest in a series of serious accusations of sexual abuse inside the government’s immigrant youth shelters.

Records Reveal “Lax” Supervision, Sexual Activity at Chicago-Area Shelters Housing Immigrant Children

Newly obtained documents provide details on troubling incidents, including children having sex in a TV room and two girls running away on a museum field trip.

Refugios para jóvenes inmigrantes: “Si eres un depredador, es una mina de oro”

Obtuvimos informes policiales y registros de llamadas de más de dos tercios de los albergues que hospedan a niños inmigrantes. Esto es lo que muestran.

Recuperó a su bebé del centro de acogida de inmigración. Y, ¿ahora qué?

Una madre indocumentada volvió a encontrarse con su hija. Las primeras treinta y seis horas fueron una combinación de alegría, preguntas acerca de su separación e inquietudes acerca del futuro.

She Got Her Baby Back From Immigration Foster Care. Now What?

An undocumented mother was reunited with her daughter. The first 36 hours brought a mix of joy, questions about the separation and worries about the future.

“Ocultos a Plena Vista”: Cientos de Migrantes Menores son Albergados en una Red Opaca de Refugios en Illinois

Documentos y entrevistas revelan acusaciones de abusos, amenazas y relaciones inapropiadas.

Una bebé fue separada de su tío en la frontera. Tres meses después, su madre todavía está tratando de recuperarla.

El caso de Liah Ferrera Amaya muestra el exhaustivo proceso de revisión al que las familias inmigrantes deben someterse para recuperar a sus hijos de la custodia de los EEUU — incluso si eso significa arriesgarse a la deportación.

Immigrant Youth Shelters: “If You’re a Predator, It’s a Gold Mine”

We obtained police reports and call logs from more than two-thirds of the shelters housing immigrant children. Here’s what they show.

“Hidden in Plain Sight”: Hundreds of Immigrant Children and Teens Housed in Opaque Network of Chicago-Area Shelters

Documents and interviews reveal allegations of abuse, threats and inappropriate relationships.

Immigrant Shelters Drug Traumatized Teenagers Without Consent

Whether they came to the U.S. alone, or were forcibly separated from their families at the border, despondent minors are often pressured into taking psychotropic drugs without approval from a parent or guardian.

A Baby Was Separated From Her Uncle at the Border. Three Months Later, Her Mother Is Still Trying to Get Her Back.

The case of Liah Ferrera Amaya shows the extensive vetting immigrant families must submit to in order to retrieve their children from U.S. custody — even if it means putting themselves at risk for deportation.

Watch the 6-Year-Old Salvadoran Girl Heard on a Secret Recording Out of a Border Patrol Detention Facility Finally Being Reunited With Her Mom

“I’ll be the happiest woman in the world,” said Jimena’s mother, Cindy Madrid, as she prepared for the moment. “It’s been very painful to be apart.”

La niña de 6 años escuchada en una grabación de audio de una instalación fronteriza sigue separada de su madre, que se esfuerza para criarla desde 1.000 millas de distancia

Jimena Madrid captó la atención internacional cuando su voz se escuchó en una grabación de audio después de que fue separada de su madre dentro de un centro de detención de la Patrulla Fronteriza. Tres semanas después, la reunificación sigue siendo incierta. “Ella siempre repite, ‘Mami, quiero estar contigo’”.

“Solo quiero decirle que lo amo”

Los padres recluidos en centros de detención migratoria sin sus hijos dicen que los teléfonos apenas funcionan y aún no saben cuándo volverán a ver a sus hijos, casi dos semanas después de que la administración Trump declarara que puso fin a la separación familiar en la frontera.

The 6-Year-Old Heard on Border Facility Audiotape Is Still Separated From Her Mother, Who Must Parent From 1,000 Miles Away

Jimena Madrid riveted people around the world when her voice was captured on an audiotape after she was separated from her mother inside a Border Patrol detention facility. Three weeks later, reunification remains uncertain. “She says over and over, ‘Mommy, I want to be with you.’”

“I Just Want to Tell My Son I Love Him”

Parents held in immigration detention without their kids say the phones barely work and they still don’t know when they will see their children again, almost two weeks after the Trump administration declared it ended family separation at the border.

The Immigrant Children’s Shelters Near You

We found 100 facilities holding immigrant children and have mapped 88 of them. Help us find out more about the facilities and the children being held there.

Here’s What It’s Like to Work at a Shelter for Immigrant Kids

Some facilities are so overstretched, employees often wait hours for a break to go to the bathroom.

About the Immigrant Children Shelter Map

Here’s how and why we mapped the immigrant children shelters, and how you can help us investigate.

Sobre el mapa de centros de niños inmigrantes

Cómo y por qué mapeamos los centros donde están los niños inmigrantes y cómo puedes ayudarnos a investigarlos

Estos son los centros con niños inmigrantes que están cerca de ti

Hemos encontrado 100 instalaciones donde están los menores inmigrantes y hemos mapeado 79 de ellas. Ayúdanos a descubrir más sobre los centros y albergues y sobre los niños que están en ellos.

Do You Know Something About a Detention Center or Shelter Where the Government is Holding Children?

Help us learn more about these facilities and assure the government agencies overseeing this process are accountable.

¿Sabes algo de un centro de detención o de un refugio de niños inmigrantes?

Ayúdanos a saber más sobre estos centros y a asegurar que las agencias gubernamentales que supervisan el proceso de detención de menores sean responsables de sus actos.

Do You Know a Child In a Detention Center or Shelter Facility?

Help us find out the facts about immigrant children being held by the government.

¿Conoces a un niño en un centro de detención o refugio?

Ayúdanos a averiguar datos sobre los niños inmigrantes detenidos por el gobierno.

Conhece uma criança num abrigo ou centro de detenção nos EUA?

Precisamos de sua ajuda para saber os fatos sobre as crianças imigrantes detidas pelo governo americano.

Conhece algo sobre um centro de detenção ou abrigo das crianças imigrantes?

Ajude-nos a assegurar que as agências de governo cuidando do processo de detenção de menores sejam responsáveis pelas suas ações.

He estado cubriendo MS-13 durante un año. Estos son los cinco puntos en los que Trump se equivoca sobre la pandilla

La pandilla no está invadiendo el país. No se hacen pasar por familias falsas. No están creciendo. Para detenerlos, el gobierno necesita entenderlos.

Video: Separada de su madre en la frontera, una niña de seis años tiene que buscar su propio camino

Una mujer salvadoreña se convierte en la cuerda salvavidas de su familia cuando su hermana fue llevada a un centro de detención en Texas y su sobrina a un albergue en Arizona.

Para una niña de seis años atrapada en el laberinto de inmigración, un número de teléfono memorizado se convierte en su salvavidas

Mientras el gobierno federal intenta reunir a las familias de migrantes, los niños tendrán la dura tarea de ayudar a identificar y ubicar a sus padres. La niña de seis años a quien se escuchaba en una grabación la semana pasada como pedía llamar a su tía tiene una ventaja.

I’ve Been Reporting on MS-13 for a Year. Here Are the 5 Things Trump Gets Most Wrong.

The gang is not invading the country. They’re not posing as fake families. They’re not growing. To stop them, the government needs to understand them.

Jared Kushner’s Grandmother Bemoaned the “Closed Doors” That Faced Refugees to America

The family of President Trump’s son-in-law and adviser escaped the Holocaust — but had to wait in a camp for years to be allowed into the U.S. If Kushner shares her view, he’s keeping it private.

Video: Separated From Her Mother at the Border, a 6-Year-Old Has to Find Her Own Way

A Salvadoran woman becomes her family’s lifeline when her sister was taken to a detention facility in Texas and her niece to an Arizona shelter.

Follow ProPublica

Latest Stories from ProPublica