Fronteras: Digitally Mapping Trump Administration's 'Zero Tolerance' Policy | Texas Public Radio

Fronteras: Digitally Mapping Trump Administration's 'Zero Tolerance' Policy

Jul 13, 2018

On this episode of Fronteras, Roopika Risam, assistant professor of English and faculty fellow for digital library initiatives at Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts, joins us to talk about the impact of the Trump administration's zero tolerance policy.


Roopika Risam
Credit Russell Shitabata / Contributed Photo

The Department of Homeland Security reported an 18 percent decline in apprehensions at the border and attributed the drop to the Trump administration’s new zero tolerance policy, which aims to prosecute every person who crosses illegally into the U.S.  

FRONTERAS EXTRAAddressing Trump 'Zero Tolerance' Policy Through Digital Humanities

However, the number of families crossing illegally jumped from 2,322 in June of 2017 to 9,449 in June of 2018. The number of unaccompanied children tripled during that same period, from 1,949 in June of 2017 to 5,115 in June of 2018.

Despite orders from a federal judge to reunite separated families within 30 days, migrants remain in detention centers run by Immigration and Customs Enforcement or Health and Human Services.

digital team of academics with varied humanities backgrounds pooled their resources and created Torn Apart/Separados, an interactive website that pinpoints ICE detention centers and HHS shelters.

Roopika Risam, assistant professor of English and faculty fellow for digital library initiatives at Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts, is a member of the team that created Torn Apart. Risam joins us on Fronteras to talk more about the project.

Norma Martinez can be reached by email at norma@tpr.org and on Twitter @NormDog1