• Democrats Wand to Use Budget Proposal to Legalize Undocumented Immigrants

    Democrats will try to use the budget proposal – and the reconciliation process — to provide a direct pathway to legal status for millions of undocumented immigrants in America. The details of the measure have not yet been released, and passage is far from certain, as there are many political and procedural hurdles to overcome.

  • The Situation at the U.S.-Mexico Border Is a Crisis – but Is It New?

    The media create the impression that there is an unprecedented crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, with droves of children arriving alone, as well as families flooding to the border. There is a crisis. But as a law professor who studies child migration, I can tell you that it’s nothing new.

  • Undocumented Immigrants Far Less Likely to Commit Crimes in U.S. Than Citizens

    Crime rates among undocumented immigrants are just a fraction of those of their U.S.-born neighbors, according to a first-of-its-kind analysis of Texas arrest and conviction records. Compared to undocumented immigrants, U.S. citizens were twice as likely to be arrested for violent felonies in Texas from 2012 to 2018, two-and-a-half times more likely to be arrested for felony drug crimes, and over four times more likely to be arrested for felony property crimes.

  • Climate Change Triggers Migration

    Environmental hazards affect populations worldwide and can drive migration under specific conditions, especially in middle-income and agricultural countries. According to a new study, changes in temperature levels, increased rainfall variability, and rapid-onset disasters such as tropical storms play an important role in this regard.

  • Economic Benefits of Illegal Immigration Outweigh the Costs: Study

    The economic benefits of illegal immigration are greater than the costs of the public services utilized, according to experts. Indeed, for every dollar the Texas state government spends on public services for undocumented immigrants, new research indicates, the state collects $1.21 in revenue.

  • The Roots of Discrimination Against Immigrants

    All over the world, immigration has become a source of social and political conflict. But what are the roots of antipathy toward immigrants, and how might conflict between immigrant and native populations be dampened? New research finds that religion may matter more than ethnicity in how immigrants are treated, even if they comply with local social norms.

  • Rising ethnic diversity in the West may fuel a (temporary) populist right backlash

    When people’s neighborhoods or wider social contexts change in visible ways, as with increasing ethnic diversity, it can be disconcerting for established residents, and trigger perceptions of “threats” that evoke “backlash” political responses. Alternatively, the diffusion of ethnic groups may increase knowledge and tolerance. Drawing on a meta-analysis of studies on the topic, Eric Kaufmann and Matthew Goodwin argue that ethnic diversity transitions may contribute to a populist right backlash. However, such effects may be temporary.

  • What history reveals about surges in anti-Semitism and anti-immigrant sentiments

    In its early years, the United States maintained an “open door policy” that drew millions of immigrants from all religions to enter the country, including Jews. Between 1820 and 1880, over 9 million immigrants entered America. By the early 1880s, American nativists – people who believed that the “genetic stock” of Northern Europe was superior to that of Southern and Eastern Europe – began pushing for the exclusion of “foreigners,” whom they “viewed with deep suspicion.” As scholar Barbara Bailin writes, most of the immigrants, who were from Southern, Central and Eastern Europe, “were considered so different in composition, religion, and culture from earlier immigrants as to trigger a xenophobic reaction that served to generate more restrictive immigration laws.” The political climate of the interwar period has many similarities with the anti-immigrant and anti-Semitic environment today.

  • White Americans see many immigrants as “illegal” until proven otherwise: Study

    Fueled by political rhetoric evoking dangerous criminal immigrants, many white Americans assume low-status immigrants from Mexico, El Salvador, Syria, Somalia and other countries have no legal right to be in the United States, new research suggests. In the eyes of many white Americans, just knowing an immigrant’s national origin is enough to believe they are probably undocumented, the study’s co-author says.

  • The power of negative thinking: why perceptions of immigration are resistant to facts

    Research shows consistently high levels of concern among people in the UK over the scale of immigration and its impact on jobs and services. New research on how people use and understand information about the economic impacts of immigration shows that there is a tendency to rely on personal accounts rather than on economic statistics.

  • Undocumented immigrant population roughly double current estimate

    The number of undocumented immigrants in the United States is roughly twice as high as commonly believed, according to new research. The research found that the number of undocumented immigrants living in the country is about 22.1 million, nearly twice the most prominent current estimate of 11.3 million. Even using extremely conservative parameters, the study estimates a population of 16.7 million undocumented immigrants, nearly 50 percent higher than the widely-accepted population figure.

  • How can the federal government reunify kids with deported parents? First step: Find them.

    Some 400 parents were sent back to their native countries without their children. As an official with the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agency put it, “we don’t keep track of individuals once they’ve been deported to foreign countries.”

  • Private prison companies are influencing immigration policy

    Groundbreaking study finds increased support for punitive immigration legislation in districts with privately owned or managed ICE detention facilities. Researchers explain that in recent years, as overall crime rates have dropped nationwide, more and more private prison companies have turned to a new money-making scheme: Partnering with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, to detain immigrants in facilities across the country. The researchers also ask: As the scope of private imprisonment grows, is the industry’s influence on politics growing as well?

  • Facing a Tuesday deadline to reunite about 100 migrant toddlers with their parents, feds say they've reunited 2

    The court-imposed deadline is only a day away for the federal government to reunite the families of about 100 migrant children under the age of 5 who were separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border. But a lawyer for the government said in court Monday that only two children of that “tender age” have been reunited so far.

  • Children have been separated from their families for generations – why Trump’s policy was different

    The Trump administration’s policy of separating migrant children from their families was officially ended on 20 June – but putting this policy into a wider historical context of state-sanctioned policies of child separation helps to understand why some aspects of it were remarkably distinctive – and caused such international outrage. Compared to historical welfare interventions, the Trump child-separation policy was distinct because of its sheer scale, and because the policy lacked any moral claim that the separations were for the good of the child. Judged in the historical context of previous child-separation policies, the administration’s policy proved short-lived because its exceptional scale and brutality lacked sufficient moral legitimacy in American public opinion to outweigh the powerful images of children’s suffering circulated in the media. For those children who have already been separated from parents – uncertain how they will be reunified – this will come as little consolation.