Five Facts Changing Trends in Illegal Immigration

Five Facts Changing Trends in Illegal Immigration

Illegal immigration has long been one of the most contentious issues U.S. society faces. Since the start of the Trump administration, there have been a number of hot button immigraton issues that have arisen, from ICE raids targeting undocumented immigrants, to changes in who can declare asylum, to debating the merits of building a wall along the country’s southern border. These issues are being debated against a changing landscape of who is entering the country.

Here are five facts on changing trends in illegal immigration in the U.S.

1. According to Axios, more than 385,000 undocumented immigrants were deported each year in fiscal years 2009 to 2011 during the Obama administration. The publication reports the administration’s deportations hit a record high of over 409,000 in fiscal year 2012 before dropping to below 250,000 during the final years of Obama’s second term. This is more deportations than the Trump administration has authorized to date. In fiscal year 2017, deportations dropped to 226,000 before increasing to 250,000 in fiscal year 2018 and 282,000 in fiscal year 2019.

2. There have been roughly the same number of migrant deaths in the Obama and Trump administrations, the Washington Examinerreported earlier this year. The publication reports that during President Obama’s time in office, 10 people died in ICE custody in 2009, five people died in 2012, and 12 people died in 2016. During President Trump’s time in office, 10 people died in ICE custody in 2017 and 12 people died in 2018.

3. The nationalities of immigrants to the United States has changed dramatically over time; between 1990 and 2010, Latin America and the Caribbean became the regions with the most emigrationworldwide. However, data from Pew Research shows that immigration from Mexico has decreased significantly over the past decade. While Mexico had been the country providing the most immigrants to the United States, today the top two countries of origin for immigrants are China and India.

4. Yet today, there are still a substantial number of people fleeing Central America due to extreme violence. Last year, The Wall Street Journal reported that although Latin America is home to only eight percent of the world’s population, the region accounts for 33 percent of its homicides. And of the 20 countries in the world with the highest homicide rates, 17 are in Central America, Latin America, and the Caribbean. This can be attributed to economic instability, gang violence, and drug trafficking.

5. Today, many people fleeing violence in Central America come to the United States, continuing the country’s long history of offering refuge to those in need. In the 20th century alone, people fleeing Cuba, Vietnam, China, Armenia, Hungary, Afghanistan, El Salvador, and Ethiopia have settled in the United States. On average, it takes approximately two years to vet a refugee and allow them to legally settle here.

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