Georgetown Law to Hold Landmark Conference on U.S. Government Surveillance of Immigrants

June 15, 2017 —

The Center on Privacy & Technology at Georgetown Law has released its schedule of speakers at its second Color of Surveillance conference, where leading civil rights advocates, historians, legal scholars and technologists will delve the long and continuing history of U.S. surveillance of immigrants – and the latest implications for civil liberties.  The event will build on the national conversation driven by last year’s inaugural event, which focused on surveillance of African Americans.  #colorofsurveillance


June 22, 2017

9:00 am to 5:30 pm

(Doors open at 8:30 am)


Georgetown Law

600 New Jersey Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001

A livestream of the event will be linked here.


The Color of Surveillance: Government Monitoring of American Immigrants will explore how current rhetoric and policies targeting immigrants by religion and nationality have deep and highly relevant roots across American history.  The ideas behind the “Muslim ban” and  “the wall” – that immigrants are dangerous and must be closely controlled, monitored and investigated — are hardly new and will continue to wreak broad repercussions across U.S. society, participants will argue.  

“People talk about surveillance as if it affects everyone equally. This conference is a testament to the fact that surveillance isn’t just a threat to privacy – it also threatens our civil rights.”

Alvaro Bedoya, executive director, Center on Privacy & Technology 


Keynote speaker Vanita Gupta – the former head of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, now president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights – will be joined by the leading scholars of the Chinese and Indian exclusions, the historian who uncovered the use of Census data to locate and detain Japanese Americans during World War II, an artist who documented his life under post 9/11 surveillance, and a range of advocates, technologists, and legal experts connecting our past to our current course.

 “History has shown that unchecked and unwarranted surveillance of immigrants has little actual national security value, while creating a heightened risk of profiling and discrimination. I look forward to a frank discussion on this important topic.”

- Vanita Gupta, keynote speaker



Georgetown Law media relations:

202-662-9694.o 202-577-7827.m

Center on Privacy & Technology:

202-662-9879.o, 218-721-2048.m


Founded in 2014, the Center on Privacy & Technology at Georgetown Law is a think tank focused on privacy and surveillance law and policy. The Center brings Georgetown Law’s legal expertise to bear on privacy debates in federal and state legislatures, regulatory agencies and the academy and trains Georgetown Law students to be leaders in privacy practice, policymaking and advocacy.

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