Who Loves ICE is a column examining the companies profiting from their work with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Booz Allen Hamilton portrays itself on its website as a company committed to changing the world for the better, driven by a high regard for its fellow humans.
“We are a global firm of approximately 26,300 diverse, passionate, and exceptional people driven to excel, do right, and realize positive change in everything we do,” the management and tech consulting firm states. “We believe in corporate and individual citizenship that make our communities better places for all.”
Evidently, the company believes one way to make communities better places for all is to work with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the law enforcement agency behind policies like family separation and the housing of immigrants in inhumane conditions.
Booz Allen Hamilton has made at least $32 million working with the agency in the 2019 fiscal year, according to USAspending.gov, a government spending tracker.
Most of that money has come from ICE’s information technology division and detention compliance and removals office, which have paid Booz Allen Hamilton for “immigration data modernization support services” and “law enforcement systems and analysis project management office support,” according to the website USAspending.gov. ICE’s detention compliance and removals office handles deportations, and the sanitary, safety, and health conditions within ICE detention facilities.
When VICE asked about the services the company provides to ICE and how working with the agency falls in line with the firm’s values, Booz Allen spokesperson Jessica Klenk noted the company does not have any involvement in detention operations or family separation.
“For many years we have provided support to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement,” Klenk said. “Our work is predominately [sic] analytic in nature and related to combating human trafficking and other criminal behavior. We only perform work that is consistent with our values.”
Last year, consulting firm McKinsey & Company ended its work with ICE after the New York Times reported that the company had received over $20 million working with the agency. That same year, a separate Booz Allen Hamilton spokesperson denied that the firm’s work with ICE involved “the separation of children from adults” in a New York Times interview.
Booz Allen Hamilton has not indicated it has any plans to end its contracts with ICE.
The company gained national attention for its work with the government in 2013, when Edward Snowden, a contractor with Booz Allen Hamilton, decided to blow the whistle on the National Security Agency’s mass surveillance system. Snowden only had access to the information he provided because of the agency’s work with Booz Allen Hamilton.