Where the Institutional Hearing Program Operates in the United States

Where the Institutional Hearing Program Operates in the United States

The Institutional Hearing Program (IHP) functions as an extension of immigration courts in jails and prisons, under the guise of expediting deportation for individuals who are serving sentences for criminal offenses. The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) runs the IHP jointly with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP).

The program operates largely outside of public view and with little regard for due process. EOIR does not publicize a complete account of the state and local facilities that participate in the IHP. This contributes to the lack of transparency surrounding the program, making it difficult to ascertain where individuals in the IHP are held and whether they have access to legal services.

The American Immigration Council and partners filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against EOIR to obtain information about how and where the IHP operates. EOIR did not provide a comprehensive, current list of facilities participating in the IHP despite our requests.

The Council partnered with the UCLA School of Law to create a map showing where the IHP operates in the United States, as of 2019.

 

Individuals with IHP hearings were held in federal and state facilities in fiscal year (FY) 2019. The map includes three layers, each representing a different type of location connected to the IHP:

  1. Federal IHP Hearing Locations (2019):

    • The pins in this layer represent federal IHP hearing locations that held at least one IHP hearing in 2019 for someone serving a federal sentence. Some of these federal hearing locations were at facilities run by the Bureau of Prisons (BOP), while others were at federal prisons run by private contractors.

  2. State Prisons Participating in the IHP (2019): 

    • The pins in this layer represent state prisons and jails that held at least one inmate who had an IHP hearing in 2019.
  3. State IHP Hearing Locations (2019): 

    • The pins in this layer represent locations where state IHP hearings were held in 2019. Individuals held in state prisons (marked in the second layer of pins) were either connected by videoconference to these hearing locations or traveled to the hearing locations for purposes of their IHP hearing.

The dataset used in the map was created by Ingrid Eagly and Steven Shafer, who analyzed 2019 Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) data. Documents obtained by the American Immigration Council through Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests were also consulted.

This map of IHP hearing locations and facilities is current as of fiscal year (FY) 2019. It does not include IHP locations that were used prior to FY 2019, nor does it reflect new locations that have been added or closures of locations since that time.

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