Racism, immigration, and policing

Ben Bowling, Sophie Westenra

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter explores the ways in which racism shapes immigration policing. Focusing on the developing roles of constables and immigration officers in immigration policing in the UK, it contributes to a wider investigation of the emergence of a ‘crimmigration control system’ arising from the convergence of criminal and immigration law. Drawing on Weber and Bowling’s (2004) ‘sites of enforcement’ model, the chapter examines the research evidence on the ways in which racism shapes immigration policing within domestic space, at the border, and extraterritorially. Immigration policing tends to invoke racial characteristics in ways that define ‘suspect communities’ and focus enforcement activities on specific people based on what is imputed to be their national, ethnic, or racial origin. This, we argue, leads to racialized restrictions on the enjoyment of fundamental rights-such as the freedom of movement-consistent with Richmond’s claim that a system of global apartheid is being created.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRace, Criminal Justice, and Migration Control
Subtitle of host publicationEnforcing the Boundaries of Belonging
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9780198814887
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


  • Borders
  • Ethnicity
  • Immigration
  • Law enforcement
  • Policing
  • Race
  • Racism


Dive into the research topics of 'Racism, immigration, and policing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this