U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Other People's Blood: U.S. Immigration Prisons in the Reagan Decade

NCJ Number
R S Kahn
Date Published
268 pages
Immigration policies and their impacts on refugees who came across the United States-Mexican border from Central America during the 1980's are critically examined, with emphasis on the nature and role of the service and processing centers in which immigrants were detained and on human rights violations and illegal actions committed by United States officials.
The discussion is based on interviews with more than 3,000 refugees who came to the United States from Central America to flee war and on the author's work as a legal assistant in four United States immigration prisons. The text traces United States policies toward Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Guatemala. It concludes that the 1 million Central American immigrants resulted partly from inappropriate and contradictory United States policies and military assistance to the governments or rebels in these countries. The narrative describes the conditions and problems in the immigration prisons at Port Isabel and Laredo, Tex., Florence, Ariz., and Oakdale, La. in the 1980's, emphasizing illegal and abusive actions by Federal officials, the Immigration and Naturalization Service, and the Border Patrol. It concludes that these actions are directly linked to current negative public attitudes and legislation regarding immigrants. It concludes that the country needs to acknowledge and remember this history and the destructive results of this government misconduct. Photographs, chapter reference notes, index, and 135 references