With so much talk in the media about immigration as of lately, it is not surprising that there is some misinformation. There are many myths about immigration and immigrants, leaving people to not actually know the truth. It’s important to always ask someone where they got their information from in regards to immigration.
The first misconception that people have in regards to immigration is that most of the immigrants here are illegal. That is simply not true. Although the United States has had an increasing amount of illegal immigrants and it has become a big issue for our country, does not mean that all of the people who are immigrants are illegal. According to statistics of the 43 or more million of foreign-born people who were living in the U.S. in 2014, 44 percent of those individuals were naturalized U.S. citizens. 27 percent that did not fit in that category were green card holders. Around 25 percent were unauthorized. Experts estimate that out of those people around 40 percent let their visa expire.
Many people have this misconception that it is easy to enter the U.S. legally. This is not the case anymore. At a certain time the U.S. had an open immigration policy. This allowed any able-bodied immigrant to come in. This is no longer the case. There are now many restrictions and rules which specify who can and cannot enter. The process is also a lot more timely. Those looking to become legal immigrants must have all the proper documentation filled out. Since the amount of people who can stay in the U.S. is so limited, these individuals must be highly skilled, escaping political persecution, or are joining close family that is already here.
A misconception about immigrants is that they do not even know English. This is actually not true. According to study, 35 percent of immigrants speak English very well. 21 percent speak it just well. Immigrants have been able to grasp English due to being in contact with lawyers, trying to find a job, the naturalization process, etc.
The next major myth that people have about immigrants is that they take good jobs away from U.S. citizens. There is practically no connection between immigrant labor and the unemployment rate of native-born workers. Due to the education system, cost of living, and the aging population, many U.S. citizens are striving for higher paying jobs. They are not willing to work for low wages. According to study, only 8 million unauthorized immigrants were a part of the civilian workforce. This makes up 5 percent of the total workforce. Immigrants who are unauthorized are usually working jobs in service, farming, or construction.
People think that immigrants are bringing crime and violence to our country. Usually immigrants are coming to this country in order to find work, to be with their family, or because they are escaping a dangerous situation they were in. Many immigrants are couples or families with children. Immigrants are incarcerated at a much lower rate than native-born Americans.
Often people will say that immigrants don’t pay any taxes. Immigrants who are undocumented pay taxes every time they buy taxable goods such as gas, clothes or new appliances. When they buy or rent an apartment, they are contributing to property taxes. According to report, “the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy highlights that undocumented immigrants pay an estimated $11.74 billion in state and local taxes a year.” “The U.S. Social Security Administration estimated that in 2010 undocumented immigrants-and their employers-paid $13 billion in payroll taxes alone for benefits they will never get.”
These are just some of the few myths in regards to immigration. If you would like to find out more busted myths, check out tolerance.org. Palacios Law Group is always reaching out to those struggling with Immigration Law issues to help. We have helped individuals obtain green cards, and have brought families together. If you are in need of an Immigration Lawyer, contact us today.