Illegal immigration has long been one of the most contested topics in our country. On the one hand, many claim that illegal immigrants take jobs away from US citizens. Others claim that these jobs are ones that no citizen would want anyway, especially at the wages paid to illegal workers. Or, the point that paying illegal immigrants helps save companies money, which in turn can be passed on to consumers.
So who is right? Do illegal immigrants actually negatively impact the economy? If so, in what ways? Let’s take a look!
It is hard to argue with the contention that illegal immigrants shrink the amount of low-paying positions in the United States, especially those manual in nature. Not only that, studies show that illegal workers have reduced the average pay for US citizens without a high school diploma, which numbers around 25 million workers, by up to 7.5 percent.
However, there is a flip side to this. Skilled laborers in states with high illegal immigration have seen up to a ten percent increase in pay on average. This is credited to the fact that simple tasks can be delegated to immigrants, freeing up time for skilled workers to do more involved tasks. Not only did this more substantially line the pockets of individual workers, it also increased the productivity of the economies of the states in question.
Unfortunately, there is one area where it is difficult to argue the negative impact of illegal immigration: crime. For example, reports indicate that around 95 percent of all outstanding homicide warrant in Los Angeles county target illegal immigrants. In addition, more than 60 percent of the members of Spanish gangs in Southern California are also illegal immigrants.
With these numbers comes an incredibly high price tag, footed by the American taxpayers. Associated costs span the entire process, from identification to arrest, racking up untold millions of dollars. While it is true that law enforcement costs would not disappear completely if we had no illegal immigrants, the price tag would undoubtedly be much lower.
What are your thoughts on illegal immigration? Let us know in the Comments section below!
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