Open Recommendations (33 total)

Immigration Enforcement: Actions Needed to Better Track Cases Involving U.S. Citizenship Investigations

Show
2 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should systematically collect and maintain electronic data on its encounters with individuals for whom there is probative evidence of U.S. citizenship. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

In July 2021, we reported on DHS's detention of U.S. citizens. We found that while ICE policy requires officers to document citizenship investigations in ICE data systems, it does not require officers to update the citizenship field after identifying probative evidence that an individual may be a U.S. citizen. As a result, ICE does not know the extent to which its officers are taking enforcement actions against individuals who could be U.S. citizens. By systematically collecting and maintaining electronic data, ICE would have better insight into its officers' enforcement of administrative immigration law. We recommended that ICE systematically collect and maintain electronic data on its encounters with individuals for whom there is probative evidence of U.S. citizenship. ICE agreed with this recommendation, stating that it will analyze the processes and systems used to collect such information and update user guides and standard operating procedures to reflect new data collection requirements. We will continue to monitor ICE's efforts to address this recommendation.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should update ICE's training materials to reflect ICE policies requiring officers to consult supervisors during encounters with potential U.S. citizens. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

In July 2021, we reported on DHS's detention of U.S. citizens. We found that ICE officer training materials contain guidance for notifying supervisors of encounters with potential U.S. citizens that are inconsistent with ICE policy. By making its training materials consistent with ICE policy, ICE would have more assurance that all encounters with potential U.S. citizens receive appropriate supervisory review. We recommended that ICE update its training materials to reflect ICE policies requiring officers to consult supervisors during encounters with potential U.S. citizens. ICE agreed with this recommendation, describing changes it made in June 2021 to its training materials for ERO officer trainings and requested that we consider the recommendation resolved and closed. We reviewed the revised training materials and found that the revisions are positive steps. However, to fully implement the recommendation, ICE should ensure that its training materials reflect ICE's policy that officers are to interview all individuals claiming U.S. citizenship or with potential indicia of citizenship in the presence of, or in consultation with, a supervisor. We will continue to monitor ICE's efforts to address this recommendation.

Firearms Trafficking: U.S. Efforts to Disrupt Gun Smuggling into Mexico Would Benefit from Additional Data and Analysis

Show
2 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should ensure that HSI analyzes additional information--for example, data that ATF shares about U.S.-sourced firearms recovered in Mexico--to supplement its existing analysis identifying smuggling trends and patterns. (Recommendation 4)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should ensure that HSI, in consultation with relevant agencies, develops performance measures to assess the results of its efforts to investigate firearms smuggling into Mexico. (Recommendation 6)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

Immigration Enforcement: ICE Can Further Enhance Its Planning and Oversight of State and Local Agreements

Show
3 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should develop and implement an oversight mechanism to monitor Warrant Service Officer participants' compliance with their Memorandum of Agreement with ICE. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

In January 2021, we reported on ICE's oversight and management of the 287(g) program. We found that ICE uses a number of mechanisms to oversee 287(g) Jail Enforcement Model participants' compliance with their agreements, such as conducting inspections and reviewing reported complaints; however, ICE did not have an oversight mechanism for participants' in the Warrant Service Officer (WSO) model of the program. An oversight mechanism could help ICE ensure that WSO participants comply with their 287(g) agreement and other relevant ICE policies and procedures. We recommended that ICE develop and implement an oversight mechanism to monitor WSO participants' compliance with the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with ICE. ICE agreed with this recommendation. In August 2021, officials stated that ICE is finalizing a WSO oversight mechanism that consists of a biannual review of WSO participants' compliance with the 287(g) MOA. We will continue to monitor ICE's efforts to address this recommendation.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should establish performance goals and related performance measures to assess and manage the performance of the 287(g) program. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

In January 2021, we reported on ICE's oversight and management of the 287(g) program. We found that ICE has not established performance goals that cover all program activities, such as ICE's oversight of its law enforcement agency (LEA) partners, or measures to assess the program's performance, such as the percentage of LEA partners in compliance with annual training requirements. As a result, ICE is not well-positioned to determine the extent to which the program is achieving intended results. We recommended that ICE should establish performance goals and related performance measures to assess and manage the performance of the 287(g) program. ICE agreed with this recommendation. In August 2021, officials stated that ICE is finalizing a (1) draft 287(g) strategic plan that will outline the program goals, objectives, and performance measures and (2) mechanism to measure progress towards achieving 287(g) program mission. We will continue to monitor ICE's efforts to address this recommendation.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should assess 287(g) program composition to help leverage program resources, optimize program benefits, and guide 287(g) expansion efforts. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

In January 2021, we reported on ICE's oversight and management of the 287(g) program. We found that ICE considers a number of factors, such as a law enforcement agency's capability to act as an ICE force multiplier, when reviewing their suitability to join the program; however, ICE has not assessed how to optimize the use of its resources and program benefits to guide its recruitment of future 287(g) participants. By assessing how to leverage its program resources and optimize benefits received, ICE could approach recruitment more strategically and optimize program benefits. We recommended that ICE should assess 287(g) program composition to help leverage program resources, optimize program benefits, and guide 287(g) expansion efforts. ICE agreed with this recommendation. In August 2021, ICE officials stated that ICE is developing a process to annually assess program composition and review performance and compliance of current participants in order to optimize program resources. ICE officials also stated that they plan to determine the optimal way of applying this new process to current 287(g) participants and to address any future expansion effort. We will continue to monitor ICE's efforts to address this recommendation.

Immigration Detention: Actions Needed to Improve Planning, Documentation, and Oversight of Detention Facility Contracts

Show
3 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Once ICE has complete and reliable discrepancy report information, the Director of ICE should regularly analyze the information in a manner that enables trends in facility operator and agreement-holder deficiencies to be identified and addressed. (Recommendation 5)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

ICE reported in August 2021 that Office of Acquisition Management, ERO Custody Management, and Field Operations met to review Office of Acquisition Management's new discrepancy report tracking mechanism. ICE said that the officials at this meeting, which was held in July 2021, focused on analyzing discrepancy report trends, identifying root causes and corrective action best practices, and monitoring requirements for facilities with a history of discrepancy reports, among other topics. ICE stated that ERO and Office of Acquisition Management will continue working together to establish a mechanism that will allow ICE to analyze discrepancy report information to identify trends and best practices in correction actions. ICE anticipates completing this work by December 31, 2021. If completed as planned, these actions should satisfy the intent of our recommendation.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should revise its supervisory structure so that the CORs' oversight functions are independent of field office management. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

ICE did not concur with this recommendation and noted in August 2021 that its Office of Acquisition Management and Office of the Principal Legal Advisor created a supervisor training that includes topics of fiscal law and procurement as well as Contracting Officer and Contracting Officer Representative (COR) roles and responsibilities. ICE noted this training was provided during a 2020 annual conference. We acknowledged in our 2021 report that ICE provided a slide-deck presentation to field office management via broadcast message. We further reported that we found this presentation insufficient for addressing the issues we identified. For example, this document did not address CORs' and some ICE headquarters officials' concerns that a COR's ability to independently and effectively carry out their oversight functions was dependent on relationships between the COR and the field office managers. Further, this document did not address the concerns we identified with CORs having sufficient support and resources to conduct their oversight functions. Last, it did not provide CORs with a safeguard for instances where they believed they should push back on ERO field office management in order to uphold the terms and conditions of a particular contract. We continue to believe that a revised supervisory structure could help ensure CORs have sufficient independence to carry out their oversight duties.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement The Director of ICE should ensure that the agency has complete and reliable information on discrepancy reports and their resolution. (Recommendation 4)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

ICE reported in August 2021 that its Office of Acquisition Management developed guidance on processing and tracking discrepancy reports associated with detention and related service contracts. The guidance is intended to help Office of Acquisition Management staff ensure discrepancy reports and any associated actions (e.g., withholdings, deductions) are resolved and properly tracked. In conjunction with the guidance, Office of Acquisition Management also established a mailbox for Contracting Officers to submit completed discrepancy reports for tracking. Office of Acquisition Management's Quality Assurance Division has been tasked with recording pertinent data elements for all submitted reports and ensuring the data are up to date. ICE reported that Office of Acquisition Management will also work with ERO to ensure Contracting Officer Representatives comply with the requirement to submit all discrepancy reports to the Contracting Officers for tracking. ICE anticipates this work will be completed by the end of fiscal year 2021. If completed as planned, these actions should satisfy the intent of our recommendation.