By Rikki Yanez
Assistant Blog Content Contributor
In recent news, immigration is a controversial topic among politicians and the citizens of this country. You have those that are for it, against it, or somewhere in the middle. This topic, figuratively and literally, hits close to home for me and possibly most Texans from the Rio Grande Valley. Just recently videos have surfaced on the internet of multiple detention facilities in Brownsville and McAllen, Texas, where Mexican migrant children are being detained. This video has caused a media frenzy and debates all across mass media– whether it is morally acceptable to separate undocumented families. The discussion of immigration is currently an important one to the country and for immigrants currently going through the process of being deported. Here are some things to know about immigration today.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies, 9 million jobs were added to the countries economy from 2000 through 2014, however between those years 18 million, legal and illegal, immigrants entered the U.S. Between two-thirds and three-fourths of those new arrivals are estimated to be legal immigrants and of those arrivals 89 percent of them were potential workers 16 and older. According to the study, job growth has not come close to matching new immigration and natural population increase, thus a decline in jobs for Americans.
During the Obama administration immigration was still going on, however the family separation is new under the Trump administration according to an article published by Vice. The policy Jeff Session announced in May separates the children from the parents, which makes the children unaccompanied minors. This leads the kids to enter the Office of Refugees Resettlement where they are held until they find a place for them.
When it comes to the way Americans view immigration, it often times splits along the party lines such as Democrats or Republican. According to Pew Research Center, 53 percent of Republicans say immigrants are making this country worse in the long run, whereas only 24 percent of democrats agree. In the study some reasons as to why immigration is a major discussion is due to crime rates, having an effect on the economy, not wanting to conform to the American lifestyle, and how much immigration should be allowed. Since immigration is more prevalent in today’s society, many people all across social media are sharing their opinions on why or why not immigration should be an issue. Some people are stating that most immigrants deserve a chance to get citizenship and jobs to support their family.
Whatever your stance is on immigration, many immigrants are currently facing difficulties and hardships. Just recently, the Trump administration created the Family Reunification Policy that stated that parents will be reunited with their children once their deportation proceedings are complete. However, many families that got separated before the policy are still unsure when they will be reunited. In addition, some hardships they are facing is adjusting to a way of life in the detention facilities. Undocumented women are also facing the chance of getting denied reproductive health care. For instance, last year a 17 year old women (who was here illegally) won a lawsuit against the Trump administration because she was denied an abortion. The judge ruled that it was unlawful to deny her the right to an abortion, despite her status. Among the challenges they face, they are also dealing with language barriers, finding or securing a job, culture barriers, racism and discrimination.
Featured image by Rikki Yanez.