Migrant Policy


Amigrant worker policy is a law regulating how individuals workingoutside their countries ought to be treated. It typifies theemployee’s working environment among other aspects. The debate onthis particular subject does not only revolve around how theworkforce benefits the United States economy. Instead as per myassumptions, ethical treatment of employees within the U.S. and thedistinctive issues as well as divisive opinions from an ethicalperspective are the core reasons why migrant worker program has notbeen formed. A program that ensures both ethical and economicbenefits to the country. This paper will look to discuss some of theaspects involved in migrant worker programs. By reviewing the historybehind migrant workforce, experiences, economic benefits and ethicaltreatment, this paper will effectively assess the migrant workerpolicy. It is also vital to understand reasons why such programs arehardly initiated.

Historybehind migrant worker workforce

Theera after American Civil War as well as towards ends of 19thcentury, tremendous expansions among various industries was realized.Sects such as agriculture were substantially improved and a majorworkforce was required. As exemplified by census reports in 1890, thepopulation within the country bulged enormously typically twice theprevious numbers. Economic developments were mainly realized inMidwest, plain states and the Northeast. The southern parts weremainly agricultural. In relation to economic growth, the Northeastwas deemed the hub with about 85% of the country’s manufacturingand processing industries. The rapid expansions across the Northattracted immigrants whose growing populations led to expansion ofinfrastructure. Being one of the hugest free trade markets, theUnited States attracted populations especially towards the northernsides. The country boasted a wide range of natural resources thatencouraged inventions. In that regard, numerous patents were issuedcovering transport, communication among other inventions. Due to therapid development of the industries that led to a substantialimprovements in the United States economy, an increased work forcewas also required. The number of immigrants grew considerably toseveral thousands. For instance, in 1863 alone, roughly 176,282immigrants entered the U.S. The numbers grew annually and by 1882,almost 800,000 immigrants arrived in the country [ CITATION Gal99 l 1033 ].

CesarChavez also plays a huge role in immigrant entering the United Statesoils. The leader was worried that employers within the United Stateswould employ undocumented immigrants to break strikes. The leaderbacked the 1986 immigration reform bill that tightened borders.Mexican borders experienced tighter securities preventing illegalmigrations. Employers hiring undocumented employees faced stricterpenalties. Immigrants who had entered the United States before 1982were entitled for amnesty. Generally, Cesar Chavez efforts entailedprevention of American employers from hiring illegal immigrants. Theyought to protect and respect the sovereignty of the country. Theleader had a clear knowledge of the sovereignty concept. Without aborder, his union would face challenges especially from illegalimmigrants. Employer favored illegal immigrants since they could beeasily be manipulated. As portrayed during this era, workers weremistreated and the lack of documentation made it even much easier.They would be beaten up and lacking a proper body to protect them,such cases would mostly go unnoticed. However, Cesar Chavezencountered a number of strikes in his union and blamed it on illegalimmigrants. His efforts happened to limit illegal entrances withemployers facing immense penalties in case they indulged in suchpractices [ CITATION Jef16 l 1033 ].


Immigrationposes both positive and negative aspects in terms of social services.There is positive correlation between immigrants and solvency ofsocial amenities such as Social Security Trust Fund. In accordance tothe National Foundation of American Policy, migrants contribute a netof roughly $611 billion in the Social Security System. Availabilityof social amenities is therefore related to numerous contributionsfrom the immigrants.

Anothersocial amenity continuously utilized by migrants is education. Thegrowing population of highly skilled labor is due to the availabilityof schools within the migrants. The growing availability trends ofsocial amenities result in a corresponding rise in a healthy andknowledgeable population. A damning fact is that immigrants tend toutilize less benefits after retiring as compared to native bornindividuals. They also receive much less social securities andMedicare as compared to native born Americans [ CITATION Mar131 l 1033 ].

Thenegative aspects involve costs involved with maintaining theimmigrants. Opponents of immigration reforms deem immigrants astakers. In that respect, they cause depletion of available socialservices. Using the social services such as healthcare and schools,the immigrants tend to increase the populations to unprecedentedlevels. They utilize more public benefits than any other groups thusany reforms in their favor would be too costly for the country [ CITATION Mar131 l 1033 ].

Ethicaltreatment of migrant workers and U.S. worker displaced

Theretends to be adverse disagreements on the impact of immigrants onAmerican workers’ wages and the labor force. Since the recessionperiod, the number of immigrants has reduced considerably therebyleading to a considerable decline in the numbers of unskilledlaborers. Though concerns on immigrant population to the availabilityof jobs tend to occur, current economic evidence affirm thataveragely, immigrant employees raise the incomes and number ofopportunities. Surveys conducted by economist do not see anyimmigrant effect on decreased wages or even unemployment rates.Instead, they lower prices and raise wages. This is evidently trueespecially since United States workers and immigrants do notnecessarily contest for the same occupations. For instance,low-skilled immigrant workers enable U.S. farmers to expound on theiragricultural products among other aspects [ CITATION Mic12 l 1033 ].

Inother notions, immigrant laborers tend to work for less. Immigrantwages are the same with natives within the similar job within thesimilar demographic features. However, this might not be true acrossall places. In general therefore, only new immigrants tend toundercut native wages. There is also a notion that immigrants tend tobe portrayed as better workers. It is a common aspect among manybusiness owners who tend to think immigrants workers are betterlaborers as compared to native-born Americans. A 1995 study by Lennonand Newman showed that employers tended to prefer immigrants thannatives. In the research, 41% of immigrants acquired jobs within ayear a stark contrast to a mere 14% for native-born blacks.Generally, the assumptions were that the rates of immigrantpopulations are the reason for limited job opportunities. They haveexhausted job opportunities thus leading to rise in unemploymentrates [ CITATION Ste03 l 1033 ].

Unethicalcircumstances surrounding immigrant workers tend to derail progressin many aspects. The U.S. food system generally depends on farmworkers who tend to face limited basic rights, live with fear,constantly abused and also face exploitations. Most of the laborersare immigrants who probably do not have legal documents. Most areforced to leave their respective countries in such of better livesending up in U.S. farms. Being undocumented, they face numerousdisheartening ordeals yet are tight lipped due to their residentialstatus. Additionally, wages are limited, health care aspects arecontravened among other detrimental facets. However, it is not thesame case for immigrants working in other fields such as health care.In that regard, the ethical issues concerning immigrant workers tendsto differ in accordance to the kind of occupation [ CITATION Nat16 l 1033 ].

Theeconomic factors and ethical standards generally go hand in hand.Though ethical issues involving migrant workers are quite broad, theydo not necessarily outweigh the economic factors. Lack of immigrantsare detrimental to industries such as agriculture since they occupymost of the work within farms. In other words, migrant workers arequite vital in the provision of foods and other farm products withinthe United States. In that respect, they can be viewed as a corecontributor to the country’s economic growth. Minimizing theirinflux into the country therefore poses a great challenge. On theother hand, ethical standards faced by the migrants ought to beimproved. In achieving this may require documentation of allimmigrants which tends to be difficult. These two aspects make itquite intricate to develop a migrant program. To achieve uniformityis a hard task [ CITATION Eli11 l 1033 ].

Economicand financial benefits

Migrantstend to improve a country’s economy in a variety of ways. In theperspective of labor markets, the 47 percent increase in the UnitedStates workforce over the past decade is attributed to migrants.Migrants fill the vital niches that are experiencing rapid growth.They also contribute to the labor market flexibility. Migrants arealso important in boosting the working age populations. Their skillsand technological knowhow are a major boost to the country’s humancapital growth [ CITATION Goo14 l 1033 ].

Accordingto studies, the United States benefits immensely from immigrantsespecially illegal immigrants. In accordance to OECD 2012 statistics,47 percent of increased workforce within the U.S. were mainlyattributed to immigrants. In the studies, the country not onlybenefits from low-skilled labor, instead high-skilled are alsoinvolved. More than half of the entire workforce within Agriculturalsects comprises of immigrants with most of them being unauthorizedlaborers. As a matter of fact, statistics provided by National MilkProducers Federation (NMPF) show that costs of retail milk would riseby a margin of 61 percent if migrant labor force were to beeradicated [ CITATION Goo14 l 1033 ].

However,other research liken immigrant population to the rising unemploymentrates. Apart from the demeaning working environments, immigrants havecontributed to high competition in the limited job opportunities.Nowadays immigrants not only venture in unskilled labor, instead theyare involved in high skilled labors that were mostly occupied bynatives. Statistical evidence tend to show a rise in highly skilledlabor among migrants [ CITATION OEC12 l 1033 ].

Withthe need of immigrant workforce deemed vital to the economy, so doesthe necessity to adhere to ethical standards that are appropriate. Inthat respect, actions taken are meant to ensure both aspects arecatered for without affecting the economy. The 2013 immigrationreform policy voted by Senator Sanders in 2013 tended to legitimizemillions of people aspiring for United States citizenship. The policywere instigated by real experiences seen at tomato fields wherepeople were being paid starvation wages. The bill policy was meant todeal with unethical events within the fields [ CITATION Ber16 l 1033 ].

Inaddition to that, a 2013 report outlined how immigrants were beingunderpaid in a program guestworker. The reports elaborated howguestworkers were continuously cheated into performing tasks withoutwages, forced into temporary jobs and held captive by the employers.By outlining this unethical behaviors aspects of limiting them can bedevised. In most cases, the program can be likened to modern dayslavery [ CITATION SPL13 l 1033 ].


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