As immigration detention soars, 2.3 million people are also regularly checking in with immigration agents

The World
Man walks out of building with sign of immigration agency behind him

Ramesh Palaniandi, a 38-year-old legal permanent resident, walks out of his appointment on April 24, 2017, with deportation officers at 26 Federal Plaza, in New York City. He has been checking in monthly since September 2016.

Tiziana Rinaldi/PRI

Millions of immigrants in the US are under some sort of supervision by the Department of Homeland Security.

They regularly report to deportation officers about updates to their immigration court cases, the status of their foreign passports, perhaps a changes of address. Sometimes they have nothing to report. Sometimes they are told to wear ankle monitors so the federal government can track their whereabouts.

To be precise, 2.3 million people are in this system, almost 2 million of them have no criminal record. That’s the number according to a spokesperson for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in New York City. It’s consistent with a report issued in April by the Office of the Inspector General at the Department of Homeland Security. (For comparison, about 4.5 million people were on probation or parole in the criminal justice system in 2015.)