Op-ed: Moving beyond illegal immigration enforcement policies

Doris Meissner, Op-ed, Washington Post, 1/7/2013

IllegaImmigration_and_Customs_Enforcement_arrestl immigration and enforcement have been the dominant concerns driving immigration policy for more than 25 years. Deep public skepticism over the federal government’s will and ability to enforce the nation’s immigration laws has come with them. As a result, “enforcement first,” a proposition that argued for effective enforcement as a precondition to broader reforms, became widely embraced. In a report released Monday, the Migration Policy Institute documents how dramatically facts have changed from those long-held perceptions. Particularly since Sept. 11, 2001, but dating to the 1986Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) — which attempted to end illegal immigration through employer sanctions, increased border enforcement and legalization — the nation has made unprecedented, steep investments in the capacity of federal agencies to aggressively enforce immigration laws.

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To read the Migration Policy Insitute report:

The report can be downloaded at www.migrationpolicy.org/pubs/enforcementpillars.pdf.

A briefer version is available at www.migrationpolicy.org/pubs/pillars-reportinbrief.pdf.


A Stronger Future: Policy Recommendations for U.S.-Mexico Relations

Mexico Institute, 07/11/2012

The Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands and the Wilson Center seized the opportunity provided by simultaneous election years in the United States and Mexico to convene a high-level retreat of preeminent political, business, academic, and media leaders from the two countries in March 2012. From this retreat emerged a fresh set of ideas to take the bilateral partnership to a new level that are put forth in the report, A Stronger Future: Policy Recommendations for U.S.-Mexico Relations.  The report presents recommendations to enhance regional competitiveness; reform the U.S. immigration system; more effectively fight organized crime and strengthen public security; further educational exchanges; increase energy cooperation; and develop ports of entry that strengthen trade and border security.

To download report click here.

For a video from the Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands from A Stronger Future: Policy Recommendations for U.S.-Mexico Relations click here.

Editorial: 5 Myths about Immigration

Doris Meissner, Washington Post, 5/2/2010

Despite the fact that we are a nation of immigrants — or perhaps because of it — immigration continues to be one of America’s most contentious topics. The new law in Arizona authorizing police to arrest individuals who cannot show documents proving that they are in the country legally has set off a fresh bout of acrimony. But as in the past, much of the debate is founded on mythology.

1. Immigrants take jobs from American workers.
2. Immigration is at an all-time high, and most new immigrants came illegally.
3. Today’s immigrants are not integrating into American life like past waves did.
4. Cracking down on illegal border crossings will make us safer.
5. Immigration reform cannot happen in an election year.

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