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Seth Freed Wessler

Journalist

Seth Freed Wessler

Featured

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Days of Deportation

To mark President Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office, the Department of Homeland Security posted a multimedia update on its website featuring video of faceless federal agents placing handcuffs on a series of suspects. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers had detained some 41,000 undocumented immigrants in that period—a 38 percent year-on-year increase—which, according to the site, reflects “President Trump’s commitment to enforce our immigration laws.”.
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To Serve the National Interest

Rhizome is pleased to announce To Serve the National Interest, an installation of new collaborative work by Ingrid Burrington, Josh Begley, and Seth Freed Wessler on view at Ace Hotel New York’s gallery from April 5 through April 28, 2017, as part of Ace’s support of Seven on Seven. Building on Wessler’s journalistic investigation into privately run immigrant-only federal prisons, Burrington and Begley present seventy-five individual lenticular prints of satellite imagery capturing these sites and government documents pertaining to them.
RHIZOME.org Link to Story
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Dreamers Get Real

Two DACA recipients (now in their 20's) go back to El Salvador for the first time in 12 years. They wanted to see their sick grandfather, and scope out what life would be like if Trump ends DACA ended and they were deported.
This American Life Link to Story
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How Trump Could Make Criminals to Deport

 The only way to quickly deport 3 million immigrants is to first make them into criminals—and he’ll have the tools to do so on day one.
The Nation Link to Story
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Fresh Air: Investigation Into Private Prisons Reveals Inmate Deaths

Seth Freed Wessler reported on substandard medical care in privately-run prisons in the federal corrections system for The Nation, which may have led the Justice Department to phase out their use. This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies, in for Terry Gross, who's off this week. Last week, the Justice Department announced it would start to phase out the use of private for-profit prisons to hold federal inmates.
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The Justice Department Will End Federal Private Prisons, Following a ‘Nation’ Investigation

In an historic rebuke of the private prison industry, the Department of Justice today announced plans to eliminate the use of private prisons to incarcerate federal inmates. The announcement follows the release of a critical inspector general’s report and an investigative series published in The Nation, in partnership with the Investigative Fund and Reveal News.
The Nation Link to Story
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Federal Officials Ignored Years of Internal Warnings About Deaths at Private Prisons

A trove of 20,000 pages of previously unreleased monitoring reports, internal investigations, and other documents obtained through an open-records suit show that the Bureau of Prisons had been warned of substandard medical care by its own monitors for years but failed to act.
The Nation Link to Story
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Sick on the inside: Behind bars in immigrant-only prisons

For years, journalists and advocates have raised questions about medical care inside private federal prisons for noncitizens. This segment exposes the truth behind those complaints, relying on extensive medical files obtained by Investigative Fund reporter Seth Freed Wessler.
Reveal Link to Story
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‘This Man Will Almost Certainly Die’

A year-long investigation about men who die of neglect in separate and unequal federal prisons for immigrants.
The Nation Link to Story
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Buried Under Inequlity

In the community that helped the Black Lives Matter movement grip the national conscience, all three commercial cemeteries founded for the burial of black bodies have fallen into disrepair. In the 1990s, one of these was dug up to make room for an airport expansion. In Greenwood, in the bareness of winter, fallen gravestones can be spotted through brittle reeds. By summertime, they’ve disappeared. Barbara Harris’s story is repeated by one St. Louis family after the next: visits to loved ones’ graves thwarted by overgrowth and poison ivy.
The Nation Link to Story
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Alabama Auto Parts Plant Slapped with Federal Restraining Order

A federal judge in Alabama issued a temporary restraining order Thursday against auto parts manufacturer Lear Corp. after the Labor Department accused the company of illegally harassing its workers and obstructing a federal safety investigation. The Labor Department on Wednesday asked a federal district court to issue the restraining order against Lear that would force it to drop a lawsuit against a worker it fired after she made public statements about unsafe workplace conditions at the company.
NBC News Link to Story
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Should a Mental Illness Mean You Lose Your Kid?

In August 2009, Mindi, a 25-year-old struggling new parent, experienced what doctors later concluded was a psychotic episode. She had been staying in a cousin's spare basement room in De Soto, Kansas, while trying get on her feet after an unexpected pregnancy and an abusive relationship. She'd been depressed since her daughter was born and was becoming increasingly distrustful of her relatives.
ProPublica Link to Story

About

Seth Freed Wessler

Seth Freed Wessler is an independent reporter in New York and a Puffin Fellow with the Investigative Fund at the Nation Institute. Seth is a senior fellow at the Schuster Institute and was previously a staff reporter for NBCnews.com and Colorlines.com. He has reported for The Nation, ProPublica, This American Life, Reveal/The Center for Investigative Reporting, Elle Magazine, and Al Jazeera. In 2014 and 2015, Seth was a Soros media fellow. He won a Hillman Prize, an Izzy Award, a SABEW investigative award, and the Reporting Award from New York University, where he was a visiting scholar. Seth's reporting has spurred the passage of legislation, inspired advocacy campaigns, and led to shifts in federal and state policy. He has appeared on NPR's Fresh Air, MSNBC, The Leonard Lopate Show and Democracy Now.