Immigration Watch International
Real Immigration Reform Needs Real Temporary Worker ProgramJanuary 17, 2009 at 10:52 am · Filed under Uncategorized

I don’t entirely agree with this article. Australia has got along fine without such workers for many years. But it may be a politically necessary compromise in the USA

Temporary worker programs can be a helpful tool for improving the legal means by which a foreigner can come to the United States to work. Previously proposed temporary worker programs have been problematic. Any new temporary worker programs must help, not hinder, immigration reform and bor-der security efforts. Temporary worker programs should be designed not as a substitute for amnesty, but to fill important niches in the national work-force, allowing employers the employees they need to help grow the economy and create more jobs for Americans.

In addition, a new temporary worker program can only be successful if there is a clear strategy for imple-mentation. Based on past experience, the right answer is to start with a pilot program that fills the gaps in existing programs and creates incentives for lawful non-immigrant work in the U.S. instead of illegal presence. An effective pilot program should also pio-neer measures to strengthen security and combat ille-gal immigration.

The Path to True Immigration Reform

No single aspect of immigration reform, whether workplace enforcement or border security, will solve the problem of the nation’s broken borders. The fed-eral government has failed in one of its basic functions to control who enters the country, and has no account-ability for those already in the U.S. A snapshot of the immigration crisis in America shows approximately 11 million illegal aliens living in the country, and con-tinuing demand by some employersfor an illegal, shadow workforce. Successful immigration reform will require a strategy that includes:

Securing the border. A secure border alone will not solve the illegal immigration issue. Ensuring that no single individual will ever cross any inch of the U.S. border is not plausible with the govern-ment’s limited resources. Securing the border will make crossing much more difficult and costly, thus reducing the incentives for people to enter illegally. Congress and the federal government should continue to invest in building infrastruc-ture at the border, adding border patrol agents, and collaborating with local and state entities.[1]

Enforcing the immigration and workplace laws. As long as there are no real disincentives, people will continue to break the law in order to come to the United States. Enforcing existing immigration laws, deporting illegal aliens when detected, and fining those who employ illegal workers will provide some real disincentives.[2] A report by the Center for Immigration Studies shows that since the government began dili-gently enforcing existing laws in the summerof 2008, the illegal alien population in the U.S. has shrunk by 1.3 million.[3]

Promoting economic development in Latin America. The constant growth in illegal immigra-tion to the U.S. is partly due to the “push-pull