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The Opposite of Freedom: Detention in the Land of the Free

A free panel discussion exploring the history of United States’ immigrant detention policy.
02.20.2020 6:30 p.m.
Tenement Museum NYC
103 Orchard Street

Members of The Marshall Project are able to reserve seats for this event. All other seating will be granted on basis of arrival. If you are a member of The Marshall Project and would like to reserve your spot, please email our membership manager, AJ Pflanzer, at

As part of the Tenement Museum's acclaimed Tenement Talk series, join us for a free panel discussion exploring the history of the United States’ immigrant detention policy, and how it brought us to where we are today.

More than 52,000 immigrants and refugees are currently detained in facilities across the United States. Some see immigrant detention as a deterrent and the enforcement of law and order. To others, it’s a human rights crisis that puts up inhumane barriers to migrants seeking safety and opportunity. Join this panel of experts to discuss the history of immigrant detention, how and why detention policies have expanded over time, the impact on migrants (including rising numbers of children) and communities, and the work being done to address current issues.

Panelists include:

Emily Kassie, Director of Visual Projects, The Marshall Project

Julia Preston, Contributing Writer, The Marshall Project

Nancy Hiemstra, Stony Brook University, author of Detain and Deport: The Chaotic Immigration Enforcement Regime

Amelia Marritz, Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow, staff attorney at Brooklyn Defender Services

Want to learn more before attending? Check out The Marshall Project’s newest digital interactive project, Detained, which looks at immigrant detention in the US and how evolving policies of the past 40 years have created a system of civil detention.