Immigration Policies Hurt Immigrant Families More Than They Help
Abrego, Leisy J.
This policy report will examine how the current immigration policy context is shaping the lived experience of Latino immigrants, families, and communities of various legal statuses. Specifically, we will assess how employer sanctions contribute to workplace violations and inhibit workers’ ability to access formal labor rights. Because many workers are also parents, exploitation prevents entire families from thriving—in the United States and in their home countries. Immigration and educational policies also deter immigrant families from incorporating fully into the country when their children who are educated here cannot reap the rewards of their hard work—despite the light of recent proposals for deferred action. In some of the debates, legislators propose temporary worker programs as a possible solution, but our report will reveal the problems of this approach by shining a light on the challenges facing immigrants with only Temporary Protected Status. We end by discussing the implications of the political disenfranchisement of non-citizens, and how the lack of a comprehensive immigrant integration program that supports immigrant civil society contributes to further inequality.
An examination of how the current immigration policy context is shaping the lived experience of Latino immigrant families and communities of various legal statuses. Working paper presented at the Baker Institute Latin America Initiative conference "Immigration Reform: A System for the 21st Century."