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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The Immigration System

10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The Immigration System

The University of Southern California’s Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration recently released a study, called “Citizen Gain: The Economic Benefits of Naturalization for Immigrants and the Economy,” which found that a path to citizenship for our nation’s immigrants offers “an often overlooked economic benefit: for a variety of reasons, naturalized immigrants are likely to see a boost in their family incomes that can benefit their children, their communities and the nation as a whole.”

The AFL-CIO has made immigration reform — and particularly a pathway to citizenship — a major focus of its planned 2013 activism. The following is cross-posted from aflcio.org’s AFL-CIO Now blog.

There are 11 million aspiring citizens who love this country and call it home. Like immigrants before them, they came to this country for freedom and the opportunity to provide a better life for their children.

These immigrant families work hard, pay their taxes and contribute to their communities. But because of a broken and punitive immigration process that tears families from each other, there really is no “line” these aspiring citizens can get into to adjust their status and start down the pathway to citizenship.

The AFL-CIO and America’s union movement, along with a broad coalition of other groups, is mounting a new campaign to build a common-sense immigration process that includes a roadmap to citizenship and one that guarantees immigrant workers the same workplace rights and protections all workers deserve.

We know that immigration reform can be a controversial issue among our union members and all workers. But immigration reform with a path to citizenship and workplace rights doesn’t just benefit aspiring citizens and their families, it’s good for all workers. Here are 10 reasons why.

As the immigration campaign continues, we will examine other key immigration issues.

1. The entire U.S. economy will grow.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that immigration reform with a path to citizenship would generate an additional $1.5 trillion to the economy over 10 years.

2. Wages will rise for both immigrant and native workers.

In “Immigration for Shared Prosperity,” former Secretary of Labor Ray Marshall writes that studies show immigration reform with a path to citizenship can raise wages for immigrant workers by 6 percent. Also the study “Raising the Floor for American Workers” reports that under a path to citizenship, “The wage floor rises for all workers—particularly in industries where large numbers of easily exploited low-wage [undocumented] immigrants currently work.”

3. More jobs will be created.

The higher earning power of aspiring citizens in just the first three years of comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship would generate up to $36 billion in net personal income and enough consumer spending to support 750,000 to 900,000 jobs, according to the study “Raising the Floor for American Workers.”

4. Added tax revenues from new jobs and higher wages will help local communities and states maintain and improve public services, including education.

The Immigration Policy Center (IPC) says that immigration reform with a path to citizenship “would generate billions of dollars in additional tax revenue as their [aspiring citizens’] wages and tax contributions increase over time.”

5. The billions of dollars a year in wage theft for both aspiring citizens and native workers will be significantly reduced. 

In New York, Los Angeles and Chicago alone, low-wage workers in immigrant-dense industries lose about $56 million a week in wage theft, according to the study Broken Laws, Unprotected Workers, which notes that the abuses are not limited to undocumented workers. “The best inoculation against workplace violations [wage theft] is ensuring workers know their rights and have full status under the law to assert them.”

6. Workers’ rights—including the right to join a union—will be strengthened.

Today, writes Marshall, unscrupulous employers threaten workers with retaliation, “when workers attempt to organize a union, file wage claims or exercise other workplace rights.” Immigration reform with a path to citizenship that guarantees workplace rights for aspiring citizens will lessen the threat of employer retaliation and allow workers to defend their rights.

7. Workplaces will become safer.

Researchers at the UCLA-Labor Occupational Safety and Health Program, found that 90 percent of the immigrant workers they interviewed feared getting hurt on the job and that a majority of the workers experienced a work-related injury or illness, but only two-thirds had reported these injuries or illnesses to their employers. Immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship and guarantees workplace rights will remove the fear of employer retaliation aspiring citizens face if they report workplace violations.

8. “High Road” employers who obey the law and treat workers with respect will no longer be at a competitive disadvantage.

Businesses that today compete with unscrupulous employers who rely on the exploitation of the undocumented to turn a profit will be on a more equal footing when aspiring citizens can exercise their workplace rights and no longer fear reprisals from low-end employers.

9. Some of America’s best and brightest students—the sons and daughters of undocumented workers—will have the opportunity to realize dreams and contribute to all of us as teachers, doctors, lawyers, scientists and soldiers.

Immigration reform that incorporates the DREAM Act initiative and puts young immigrant students who were brought to this country by their parents, raised in our neighborhoods and educated in our schools on a path to citizenship, will help put some of the best and the brightest young workers into our labor force.

10. It’s the right thing to do.   

“The current immigration policy breaks up families, stifles opportunities for new American immigrants and allows low-end employers to take advantage of workers and pursue a race to the bottom in wages and labor standards…Members of our unions, like the rest of the American public, strongly support inclusive reform that reflects our shared values: dignity, fairness, opportunity, voice and justice,” said AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka.

Photo credit: dignidadrebelde at flickr.com/Creative Commons

  • I would sure like to believe that these things would certainly happen after immigration reform takes place. Forgive me for being a bit skeptical. It seems to me that much of this depends upon the employers doing the right thing, looking out for workers rights, safety and alike. Are they doing so now? As to union membership starting to grow again is based upon a better class of employers more interested in the welfare of their workers than their bottom line. I worked for over 40 years and seldom did I encounter such benevolence in the work place. I sure hope that I’m wrong, but I just don’t see such wonderful gains anytime soon on the horizon.

  • InsideEye

    My question is “How?”, It is not the right thing to do. There…… I have said it and therefore it is true.

  • dalnb

    I hahve been a strong believer and supporter of our nations unions and have considered them as the strength behind workers protection. Without the unions Americas work force would be not much more than the slave labor the unions brought us out of.

    However, there is no way I can support the unions efforts to influence political and public support allowiing amnesty for illegal immigrants. Articles such as this are clearly seen as “chops” from various research articles deleating much of the facats and publishing only thos that support effforts to bring millions of illegal aliens into a work force that is already suffering from lack of jobs.

    What the AFL-CIO suggets is nothing more that “pay back” for politiciians who supported the unions and are seeking to increase voting membership by pulling the illegal;s into the work force. Rather than

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13
    The AFL-CIO and America’s union movement, along with a broad coalition of other groups, is mounting a new campaign to build a common-sense immigration process that includes a roadmap to citizenship and one that guarantees immigrant workers the same workplace rights and protections all workers deserve.
    {{{ -COMMENT – America has a “roadway/pathway” to citizenship, the same path millions of immigrants have taken in the past. The same millions America can stand proud with and accept into our society. America does not need to give up our quality-of-life, our pride, our way of life or change our laws to appease those who prefer to violate our laws. We may as well take down traffic signs, forgive shoplifters, not pay taxes, fight on our streets with anyone anywhere, dump our garbage wherever we desire; if we are to ignore our laws in favor of these illegal’s then we might as well ignore the rest of our laws. Post Facto laws prohibit changing laws violated to favor the criminal past activities– why should we move away from that for these illegals when for hundreds of years have held strong to that theory? }}}

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13
    We know that immigration reform can be a controversial issue among our union members and all workers. But immigration reform with a path to citizenship and workplace rights doesn’t just benefit aspiring citizens and their families; it’s good for all workers. Here are 10 reasons why.
    {{{ COMMENT — When all the facts are put on the table and the reason, logic and truth becomes evident these comments can be shown to be false. There can be no satisfactory end when special interests individuals and groups tailor the outcome of research, twist facts and manipulate data for the soul purpose of achieving their own objectives, as has been done in this article. }}}

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13
    1. The entire U.S. economy will grow.
    The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that immigration reform with a path to citizenship would generate an additional $1.5 trillion to the economy over 10 years.
    {{{ COMMENT – That must be a difficult sell when we look at the fact the years of the early 21st century showed 12 Million plus illegal aliens in the United States. It was during this same time our economy started falling apart. Has the CBO balanced the cost to the American Tax Payer in allowing the illegal’s into our country. This report should have included the hundreds of studies with data in conflict with the comments here or should have at least included the full CBO report referred to. Half truths have no place in “honest” discussions. The cost for social services, the cost to education, the cost to our medical system, the coast to insurance companies and American citizens who carry the burden of medical care for illegal’s who can not or do not pay their own medical costs and have no insurance to do it for them; the American worker and property owners pay these costs
    I have no doubt a further review of the comments here would show what the illegal aliens earn is small in comparison to what they cost our society. }}}

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13

    2. Wages will rise for both immigrant and native workers.
    In “Immigration for Shared Prosperity,” former Secretary of Labor Ray Marshall writes that studies show immigration reform with a path to citizenship can raise wages for immigrant workers by 6 percent. Also the study “Raising the Floor for American Workers” reports that under a path to citizenship, “The wage floor rises for all workers—particularly in industries where large numbers of easily exploited low-wage [undocumented] immigrants currently work.”

    {{{ COMMENT— Why are we spending our time and money attempting to build -Another- pathway to citizenship for those who have chosen to violate our laws by illegal entering and remaining in our nation; why are we not working to improve and support efforts for those who have spent their time and money in following the “path” laid out in our current laws. Why should those who refuse to comply with our laws, illegally come into our nation and remain here, demand rights they are not entitled too, protesting in marches on our streets, tearing down and burning our flag replacing it with their own and threatening our nation with a take over of their own be treated better than tose who have elected to follow our laws! }}}
    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13

  • dalnb

    3. More jobs will be created.
    The higher earning power of aspiring citizens in just the first three years of comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship would generate up to $36 billion in net personal income and enough consumer spending to support 750,000 to 900,000 jobs, according to the study “Raising the Floor for American Workers.”
    {{{ COMMENT – I have never seen our government put this kind of emphasis into helping the thousands of American kids who would benefit from a similar effort. If this is factual then why has these illegal’s not chosen to comply with our laws; go back to where they belong and apply for legal entry into the United States where they can realize these alleged benefits; our own kids don’t get them – why should we be working to ensure those who do not even belong here get them? }}}

  • dalnb

    4. Added tax revenues from new jobs and higher wages will help local communities and states maintain and improve public services, including education.
    The Immigration Policy Center (IPC) says that immigration reform with a path to citizenship “would generate billions of dollars in additional tax revenue as their [aspiring citizens’] wages and tax contributions increase over time.”
    {{{ COMMENT — Studies have shown that many of the illegals in our country send a portion of their income back to the country they came from. That is a huge transfer of American wealth out of the nation; It has been shown that every dollar spent in a community circulates ten times before it leaves the community. Every dollar earned in a community and spent somewhere else is a loss for that community. Assume a local tax rate is 7%. That means every dollar spent there brings in seven cents in tax revenue. Ten dollars brings in 70 cents, $700.00 brings in $49.00 How much is lost in local taxes when local illegals are sending money out of country, How many less police officers, teachers, street and parks workers, community improvements, etc. are lost because of this? If our own men and women were being able to get the jobs suggesting these wages we would spend the money here, build our taxes bases and have more employment for our own kids }}}}

  • dalnb

    5. The billions of dollars a year in wage theft for both aspiring citizens and native workers will be significantly reduced.
    In New York, Los Angeles and Chicago alone, low-wage workers in immigrant-dense industries lose about $56 million a week in wage theft, according to the study Broken Laws, Unprotected Workers, which notes that the abuses are not limited to undocumented workers. “The best inoculation against workplace violations [wage theft] is ensuring workers know their rights and have full status under the law to assert them.
    ” {{{ COMMENT – Comprehensive Immigration reform needs to make hard laws making it illegal for any employer, retailer or any other person to take, steal, swindle or otherwise swindle any person out of earned wages or barter. }}}

  • dalnb

    6. Workers’ rights—including the right to join a union—will be strengthened.
    Today, writes Marshall, unscrupulous employers threaten workers with retaliation, “when workers attempt to organize a union, file wage claims or exercise other workplace rights.” Immigration reform with a path to citizenship that guarantees workplace rights for aspiring citizens will lessen the threat of employer retaliation and allow workers to defend their rights.
    {{{ COMMENT – Employers have a right to refuse employment to anyone they feel is or may be an unsatisfactory employee. That may be because they have a criminal record, they are not skilled, they can not support a safe work place, they can not communicate sufficiently to support an effective work-place, they lack the required education, etc. Because a person can not get hired does not give that person a right to organize labor. We can not take rights away from employees and we can not take right away from employers! Marshall is basically saying “take away anything that stands in the way of ensuring a secure American Quality of Life and while doing so be sure anyone who has failed to live by America’s standards is given all the advantages they want! What Marshal writes regarding the, unscrupulous employers has been a problem in the American workplace for years and years. We have not been able to satisfy either side with efforts to fix these problems with our own people – why does he think allowing millions of illegal’s who have already shown their disrespect for our laws improve the problem? .” }}}

  • dalnb

    7. Workplaces will become safer.
    Researchers at the UCLA-Labor Occupational Safety and Health Program, found that 90 percent of the immigrant workers they interviewed feared getting hurt on the job and that a majority of the workers experienced a work-related injury or illness, but only two-thirds had reported these injuries or illnesses to their employers. Immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship and guarantees workplace rights will remove the fear of employer retaliation aspiring citizens face if they report workplace violations.
    ( COMMENT: – Nothing is reported as to the cause of accidents; how many were due to the aliens inability to communicate, their unskilled knowledge, their failure to safety rules? Were the findings compared to other workers and job management? If the findings were based on interviews and comments from immigrant workers – how many were illegal, how many were legal and should anyone expect an unbiased poll? }}}

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13
    8. “High Road” employers who obey the law and treat workers with respect will no longer be at a competitive disadvantage.
    Businesses that today compete with unscrupulous employers who rely on the exploitation of the undocumented to turn a profit will be on a more equal footing when aspiring citizens can exercise their workplace rights and no longer fear reprisals from low-end employers.
    ({{{ COMMENT —In other words take away the rights of employers and the best interests of Americans and allow illegals the right to open intrusion and work stoppage as they desire. }}}}

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13
    9. Some of America’s best and brightest students—the sons and daughters of undocumented workers—will have the opportunity to realize dreams and contribute to all of us as teachers, doctors, lawyers, scientists and soldiers. Immigration reform that incorporates the DREAM Act initiative and puts young immigrant students who were brought to this country by their parents, raised in our neighborhoods and educated in our schools on a path to citizenship, will help put some of the best and the brightest young workers into our labor force.
    {{{{ COMMENT – Unfortunately this calls for giving the illegal’s what hundreds of thousands of our own children will never get; children who have grown up in the United States in American families who do not have the financial resources to send their own kids to higher education institutes. Making it sound like we owe it to the illegal immigrants kids while ignoring our own can be nothing less that ridiculous! We would all like to see our dreams realized but most face life with the reality. These kids (or adults, know their status and are old enough to do the right thing. They can go back to their native homes and do as every legal immigrant has done; apply as our laws stipulate and be welcomed into our country! Don’t hang the short falls and criminal acts of their parents on us! }}}

  • dalnb

    Reference 10 Reasons All Workers Benefit From Fixing The` Immigration System, Than National Memo, 01/13/13
    10. It’s the right thing to do.
    “The current immigration policy breaks up families, stifles opportunities for new American immigrants and allows low-end employers to take advantage of workers and pursue a race to the bottom in wages and labor standards…Members of our unions, like the rest of the American public, strongly support inclusive reform that reflects our shared values: dignity, fairness, opportunity, voice and justice,” said AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka.
    {{{{ COMMENT: As if Trumka has any idea what :the rest of the American public” supports! These illegal’s came here on their own and introduced their children to the problems they now claim. Thousands and thousands of American families have gone through this and continue going through similar problems due to the illegal actions of one or more family members. Criminal acts by parents often result in significant social and educational hardships of American born kids, we do very little for them but Trumka would have us bend over back-wards for the illegals. He shows nothing less that a political ploy with his suggestion that All Americans Want This! }}}