Despite High Unemployment, U.S. Continues Admitting Millions of Legal Immigrants and Temporary Foreign Workers
June 10, 2011 · Print This Article
WASHINGTON — The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) has launched a television campaign in Ohio suggesting that the levels of legal immigration and temporary foreign workers be cut in order to reduce competition for scarce jobs Americans desperately need. The ads point out that despite some of the highest unemployment rates since the Great Depression, America’s leaders continue to allow more than one million legal immigrants and temporary foreign workers a year to enter the country, many taking jobs.
From June 2009 to June 2010 foreign-born workers gained 656,000 jobs while native-born workers lost 1.2 million, according to an analysis of U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Labor data by the Pew Hispanic Center. Similarly, research conducted at the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University shows that between 2008 and 2010, while some 6.26 million Americans lost their jobs, new immigrants – both legal and illegal – flooded into our labor market and found jobs.
Ohio has been hit hard by the country’s economic slowdown, with 8.4 percent of the labor force officially unemployed. In some areas of the state, the unemployment rate continues to hover near 10 percent. Many have given up looking for work and others have taken jobs at half the wages they were earning previously. Yet, both legal and illegal immigration continue unabated. Some 20,000 legal immigrants settle in Ohio each year. In addition, illegal aliens and temporary foreign workers compete for available Ohio jobs.
“Jobs are disappearing while immigration continues rising,” noted Dan Stein, president of FAIR. “While most of the attention is on illegal immigration, America’s legal immigration continues to inundate the country with more foreign competition for jobs that are in short supply. Reducing overall levels of immigration would put Americans back to work, in Ohio and across the country. That’s an economic stimulus plan Americans can and should support.”
Two TV commercials are currently airing. The first ad points out that while political leaders talk about the problem of illegal immigration, there is little, if any, consideration given to the impact of a policy that admits a million legal immigrants a year in spite of high American unemployment. The second TV spot features a young mother who has lost her job and is forced to move back in with her parents. The commercial illustrates the hardships American families are undergoing and urges the government to focus on American needs, rather than catering to special interest demands for unending flows of foreign labor.
While the campaign was launched in Ohio, the ads are planned for additional U.S. markets.