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America, Canada and Mexico: Immigration Reform

            Immigration has been an ongoing issue in the United States of America for a very long time mainly because of the shared borders with Mexico. The standard of living and economic conditions being so much lower there than in the U.S. has influenced Mexican citizens to cross over into the U.S. for temporary or permanent work. Many stayed, living secretly without the necessary paper work or green cards. Many employers take advantage of their illegal status paying them low wages without any benefits. Politicians, U.S. citizens and presidents have been trying to come up with a solution. Political parties have differed on what kind of policies to put in place just like with all other issues. Today they seem to finally be willing to get together to resolve this issue without too many clauses attached to it. We must be particularly careful with the steps we take and policies we accept as we move forward with immigration reform, being mindful of how this country was founded, by people coming from across the world looking for a better life for themselves and their families exactly like the illegal immigrants of today. Of course those on the Mayflower had an advantage: they were not considered illegal.
             The biggest influx of workers coming into this country is from Mexico. They find employment in agricultural work because it is one of the lowest paying jobs that most Americans do not want. According to an article in the Boston Globe written by Nick Miroff, while the United States of America issues around 50,000 seasonal agricultural visas a year, up to a few years ago, there were more than a million border patrol arrests a year (A6). Even though there is no cap on the amount of seasonal agricultural visas that can be issued, the lengthy procedures in place encourages workers and employers to go the illegal route. According to Miroff, the arrest rate has gone down by more than half in the last few years because of better law enforcement along the borders, a slow economy in the U.

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