Women of Color in Immigration Enforcement

28 Pages Posted: 24 Nov 2021

See all articles by Kit Johnson

Kit Johnson

University of Oklahoma - College of Law

Date Written: November 13, 2021


Immigration enforcement agencies are among the most racially diverse in federal law enforcement. More than half of all women holding law enforcement positions within immigration agencies are minorities, though the overall number of female agents is relatively small.

This Essay focuses on women of color in immigration enforcement. It begins with a necessary primer on immigration enforcement. Next, it traces key developments that led to the diversification of immigration enforcement, including analysis of never before published data about the racial and gender diversity of immigration agents. Then, it considers the unique benefits of hiring women of color as enforcement agents and notes barriers to the recruitment and retention of women of color by immigration enforcement agencies.

This Essay is largely descriptive, offering a picture of immigration enforcement and the role that women of color play in it. My hope is that this Essay will serve as a jumping-off point for empirical research regarding a before-now understudied segment of the immigration enforcement workforce.

Keywords: immigration, migration, enforcement, government, women, female, employment, recruitment, retention, hiring

JEL Classification: K37, K1, K10

Suggested Citation

Johnson, Kit, Women of Color in Immigration Enforcement (November 13, 2021). 21 Nevada Law Journal 997 (2021), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3962604

Kit Johnson (Contact Author)

University of Oklahoma - College of Law ( email )

300 Timberdell Road
Norman, OK 73019
United States

HOME PAGE: http://kitjohnson.net

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