October 16, 2013
Immigration Policy Reforms: A proposed Solution to Alleviate Poverty in the US
Poverty and hunger are the key drivers of US immigration woes as most immigrants flee their native land in search of better opportunities. However, on their arrival they are met with stiff immigration policies that deny them equal employment opportunities with their native counterpart. Consequently, reforms in the US immigration policy will not only provide a solution to the problem of illegal immigration; but will also help alleviate poverty since more immigrants will become economically empowered. In order to find a solution for unauthorized immigration, policy makers must first acknowledge that immigration is a global phenomenon rather than a US problem. Secondly, they must understand that what drive immigration is not only global poverty, but also social inequality and scarcity of economic resources. Despite this glaring reality, national policy makers have often overlooked the global dimension of immigration while formulating poverty eradication policies. Since immigration significantly contributes to the escalation of poverty rates, this paper proposes a robust immigration policy reform dialogue. A reformed immigration policy that accords immigrants greater opportunities for socio-economic empowerment would significantly lower poverty rates. Though not a comprehensive solution, amending our immigration laws can reduce poverty by up to 30-40 percent.
Even though immigration is largely driven by the need for social-economic empowerment, modern day illegal immigrants encounter insurmountable obstacles trying to escape poverty once in the United States. Poverty rate has been reported to be high among illegal immigrants as compared to their native counterpart. Recent statistics indicate that poverty rate among the 11 million illegal immigrants stand at about 21-35%. Compared to the natives and legal immigrants, illegal...
Cited: Ron Haskins, “What Works Is Work: Welfare Reform and Poverty Reduction, 4 Nw. J. L. & Soc. Pol 'y. 31 (2009). http://scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu/njlsp/vol4/iss1/3 Source: http://scholarlycommons.law.northwestern.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1032&context=njlsp.
Philip L. Martin & Edward Taylor, “Poverty Amid Prosperity: Farm Employment, Immigration, and Poverty in California” American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Vol 80, No.5, Proceedings Issue. (Dec., 1998), pp.1008-1014. http://content.csbs.utah.edu/~philips/soccer2/readings_files/Martin%20Philips%20Poverty%20Amid%20Prosperity-%20Farm%20Employment,%20Immigration,%20and%20Poverty%20in%20California%20%201998.pdf
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