Monday, October 21, 2019

Immigrants and Us Economy Essays

Immigrants and Us Economy Essays Immigrants and Us Economy Essay Immigrants and Us Economy Essay The Economic Impact of Illegal Immigrants and the US Economy According to most American people the view of illegal immigration is often a negative one. Philip Martin, an associate professor at University of California – Davis, wrote in his essay, over 90 percent of American population wanted to stop illegal immigration and another 80 percent wanted to reduce the numbers of illegal immigrants in the United States. (Martin, 1982) Illegal immigrants who â€Å"free ride† using the government programs such as unemployment, welfare, education, drain resources for those US citizens. An April 2006 FoxNews poll indicated that 87 percent of those polled expressed concern that illegal immigrants would overburden government programs and services. Sixty-five percent believe that illegal immigrants would cost the country more because they don’t pay taxes yet use public services such as schools and emergency care. The top three proposals in dealing with illegal immigration are: Eighty percent favored building up border patrols, 73 percent favored imposing fines to those employers who hire illegal immigrants, and 59 percent favored allowing temporary status for illegal immigrants. Fox News, 2006) Free ride is defined as receiving the benefit of a good without paying for it. How will illegal immigrants pay for public goods and services if they do not pay taxes? The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), is an organization whose common belief is to reform immigration policies to secure our nation’s interest. They raise issues regarding the impact illegal immigration on the US economy. FAIR estimated the number of illegal immigrants in the United States, to be approximately 13 million people as of 2007. Other numbers range from 10-12 million between the years of 2004-2006. In 2000, the Census Bureau estimated 8. 7 million and that and that the population will grow by at least 500,000 per year. (FAIR, 2008) FAIR says it costs the United States, in 2000, over 36 billion dollars for just three programs (education, medical and incarceration) to accommodate illegal immigrants in the US, with costs projected to be higher in 2010 and 2020 going up to 71 billion dollars and 106 billion dollars, respectively. With this many illegal immigrants one would wonder if America’s resource will be exhausted. Resource such as land, water and natural gas are limited resources and can be used one and then it is gone and no longer available for anyone else to use. Is it right that an illegal immigrant be given access to such resources without paying for them while the American taxpayer bears the expense? This paper will demonstrate how the US economy is impacted. The economic cost of illegal immigrants it taking a toll on the American people at their expense. A population explosion has Americans worried that illegal immigrants will use up public goods and services and will eventually exhaust its resources which were meant for American citizens. The numbers for American unemployment between the years of 2000 and 2007 are 136,559,000 to 146,032,000, respectively. The difference of 9,473,000 people in a 7-year timeframe is a surge in unemployment. Today, unemployment is at an all time high without the added issue of illegal immigrants â€Å"taking jobs away† by doing the jobs that no one else would want. Unemployment as defined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics Persons are classified as unemployed if they do not have a job, have actively looked for work in the prior 4 weeks, and are currently available for work. Persons who were not working and were waiting to be recalled to a job from which they had been temporarily laid off are also included as unemployed. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2010) The reason why illegal workers are often employed is because it makes it easier for the employer and employee to escape paying taxes. In Ernesto Zedillo’s book, â€Å"The Future of Globalisation: Exploration in Light of Recent Turbulences†, he argues that without paying taxes, illegal immigrants can become a drain on social services and a public charge upon those states receiving the bulk of the inflow (Zedillo, 2007). With the free ride of not having to pay taxes, illegal immigrants are more prone to abuse and exploitation without the aid of the government programs. Zedillo concludes that while working in these harsh conditions, many illegal immigrants find it hard to economically and culturally live in the U. S. due to having the risk of become an underclass and face a social conflict with U. S. citizens (Zedillo, 2007). By having social conflicts with others, illegal immigrants will hurt government services by not actively articipates in contributing taxes however they will benefit the overall economy in which immigration is essential to the dynamism of the American economy and for sustaining its pace in job creation (Zedillo, 2007) (Gupta, 2010). On the other hand, Gupta argues that the impact is favorable for illegal immigrants because it keeps inflation low. [ (Gupta, 2010) ] He goes on to say those immigrants bring with them a hard work ethic, while most natives believe that they have a hidd en agenda to come to America to take advantage of it opportunities in hopes of making a better life and decide to stay in America. Another benefit for immigrants to join the work force is it keeps wages low resulting in decreased production costs and prices so consumers can spend more money. On the other hand, because most immigrants are less educated and earn less than natives, wages are decreased making the job market very competitive. Taking up residence in America would be imposing on the natives because again their resources and access to public goods will be limited by the growing numbers of illegal immigrants that are crossing America’s borders. Many could conclude that immigrants who come to America would exhaust the services that are currently being used by low-skilled workers who are just trying to survive through programs such as welfare and education. Before the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996, also known as the Welfare Reform Act, was signed by President Clinton, the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) existed. US Dept of Health and Human Services, Unk) AFDC was established by the Social Security Act of 1935 (HHS ASPE, 2009) It was a grant program in which states could provide payments for children in need to did not have a parent in the household, whether they were disabled, had died or unemployed. Each of the contiguous states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands initiated and implemented an AFDC program PRWORA categorized immigrants and outlined who was entitle to certain public goods and services. Legal and illegal immigrants were barred from certain government programs including welfare. However, the Act was revised to allow services for various categories of immigrants to access emergency services and education. (MPI, 1996). The revision was known as Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996, also signed by President Clinton. Title V of this Act ensured immigrants received access to public benefits and imposed requirement to obtain sponsorship for immigrants’ relatives. (VisaPortal, 2006). The purposes for such pieces of legislation were to ensure that immigrants and natives were given access to ensure they had facilities and programs for which they could survive. FAIR states the healthcare costs in California alone . 4 billion dollars in unreimbursed costs (Gluek amp; Cihak, 2005) . In the states of Texas and Arizona, respectively, the cost are as high as . 85 and . 4 billion a year. The costs continue to rise not only in the welfare and healthcare arena but there are also costs associated with the education of illegal immigrants and their children. Educating children of illegal immigrants could also cost the American taxpayers more money than if programs are not created to educate them. Three areas where it could cost the American taxpayer are: the legal system, the workforce, and for wages and taxes. (Miller, 1997) In the legal system, if education is not enforced then it is assumed that they will become delinquents and turn to crime and become involved in gang activity, resulting in attorney fees and possibly incarceration which again would hit the taxpayer’s wallet. Secondly, without an education, they would become illiterate and unable to obtain employment. An educated employee would receive a paycheck and pay taxes like the rest of the legal immigrants and American taxpayers. The more education received the more likelihood of being able to sustain themselves and their family. In due time, as members of society, they would â€Å"payback† the funds that were used for them and replace the needed funds through their taxes they paid for those in need. The cycle perpetuates itself because it is likely that children will pursue a better education. In the state of California alone, it has 12 percent of the nations public school students in grades K-12, but it is home to 46 percent of the nations 2. 8 million Limited-English Proficient (LEP) students. Programs have been created to accommodate those who do not speak English at home. The numbers of students are increasing. In 1990 it was 18 percent and rose to 25 percent in 1996. (Miller, 1997). In addition to creating programs, there is a growing need for bilingual teachers also. The shortage creates an education that could be deficient in learning skills hat are necessary to succeed through school. The Federation for American Immigration Reform as mentioned earlier, is an organization whose common belief is to reform immigration policies to secure our nation’s interest. They raise issues regarding the impact illegal immigration on the US economy. FAIR was organized in 1979 and has three main objectives: (1) improve border security, (2) stop illegal immigration, and (3) pr omote immigration levels consistent with national levels. FAIR writes publications and conduct research to assist government officials to write immigration legislation. Immigration is an important topic because it permeates every facet of the American way of life. From healthcare, education, welfare, our legal system, our environment, to budget and other areas all of which immigration legal and illegal; affect the American economy. Many people believe that immigration reform to legalize 11 million immigrants will inundate public services resulting in making it difficult for American to find employment. The issue of immigration is a very sensitive topic for most. While many support giving amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants, there are almost the same amount who do not support immigration reform. Immigration reform has its pros and cons. Many say that immigration reform will help America’s economy. Some say immigrants help out the economy by purchasing goods resulting in money coming back into the economy. Some say they drain the economy because they are competing with American natives who are low skilled workers by taking their jobs, who are just as unskilled as the natives are. If they do not further their education and strive to sharpen their skills, they will remain at that skill level. Unskilled labor usually mean s a higher poverty rate with increased unemployment rates. The laws of economic supply and demand would make the situation worse by lowering wages. On the other hand supporting immigration reform would mean more flexibility for businesses who use cheap labor. Increased productivity means increasing the supply for the demand to buy such products by consumer. Another reason supporters agree with reform is it give immigrant families an opportunity to work and support a family â€Å"back home†.. Immigrant families who come to America see coming to America as a land of opportunity just like ur forefathers did from Euroope. In summary, this paper addressed concerns about illegal immigrants getting a free ride by using public services such as welfare, education and unemployment. The American taxpayers have concerns and believe the United States and the federal government should move to limit the number of illegal immigrants to have access to public goods and services. The new welfare reform, PRWORA is the latest example. This legislation bar s illegal immigrants from virtually all public benefits. It also bars or permits states to bar legal immigrants from major federal programs including cash welfare, food stamps, Medicaid, and Supplemental Security Income, although these provisions are currently under challenge. (Smith amp; Edmonston, 1998) 1llegal immigrants who free ride should pay the taxes like others do and not partake of public services in place now and not take advantage of their neighbors who have managed to getting a service when they need it.

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