E.g., 07/26/2014
E.g., 07/26/2014

U.S. Immigration Policy Program

U.S. Immigration Policy Program

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

This report profiles the current-era deportation system, exploring the new legal authorities, spending increases, and policy changes over the last two decades that have resulted in the removal of more than 4.5 million unauthorized immigrants since 1996. The report analyzes key trends in border and interior apprehensions, deportations, and criminal prosecutions, and examines the policy levers available to influence deportation policies, practices, and outcomes.

Donna Burton/CBP

Within days, the Obama administration is expected to reach a milestone that has brought fear and anger to immigrant communities: A record 2 million removals since taking office. At the same time, the administration is accused of failure to enforce immigration law for its actions to shield from deportation hundreds of thousands of unauthorized immigrant youth and others. How are these two seemingly contradictory realities possible?

Rebecca Kilberg/MPI

This policy brief traces the successes and failures of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act, which represented the first and most comprehensive legislation to take on the issue of illegal immigration to the United States. The brief makes the case that IRCA's major flaws were rooted in statutory design more than regulatory challenges and implementation by the administrative agencies.

Ty Tengan, Monisha Das Gupta, Denise Eby Konan, Minister Juan Manuel Calderón Jaimes, Jeanne Batalova, and Sue Patricia Haglund at the launch of the report.

The Mexican-origin community in Hawaiʻi, which represents a small but growing population in this multi-ethnic state, has different outcomes than Mexican immigrants and U.S. citizens of Mexican ancestry who live in the continental U.S. Its Mexican-origin residents have higher employment, reduced poverty, more English proficiency, and lower incidences of unauthorized status than their counterparts on the U.S. continent.

This fact sheet offers a detailed review of the comprehensive immigration reform legislation approved by the U.S. Senate in June 2013 and compares its major provisions with those of the five targeted immigration bills approved by the House Judiciary Committee and the House Homeland Security Committee.

Recent Activity

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Reports
September 2006
By Doris Meissner, Deborah W. Meyers, Demetrios G. Papademetriou, and Michael Fix
Reports
September 2006
By Doris Meissner, Deborah W. Meyers, Demetrios G. Papademetriou, and Michael Fix
Reports
September 2006
By Doris Meissner, Deborah W. Meyers, Demetrios G. Papademetriou, and Michael Fix
Reports
February 2006
By Susan Ginsburg
Reports
August 2005
By Demetrios G. Papademetriou, Betsy Cooper, and Steve Yale-Loehr
Reports
June 2005
By Jeffrey S. Passel

Pages

Policy Briefs
April 2005
By Donald M. Kerwin
Policy Briefs
February 2003
By Elizabeth Grieco
Policy Briefs
June 2002
By Demetrios G. Papademetriou and Deborah W. Meyers

Pages

Video
February 7, 2012

MPI Senior Fellow Doris Meissner discusses U.S. immigration policy during the Fireside Forum on Foreign Policy at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. The other participants are Christine Neumann-Ortiz, Executive Director of Voces de la Frontera and Douglas Savage, Assistant Director of the Institute of World Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Video
April 26, 2011

The conference offered law and policy analysis and discussion on cutting-edge immigration issues. Featured panelists included high-ranking government officials, academics, advocates, and other immigration experts.

Video
March 30, 2011

Doris Meissner, Director of the U.S. Immigration Policy Program at MPI, offers her knowledge and expertise regarding border security in this testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

Video, Audio
March 14, 2011

This discussion focuses on the MPI report, "Executive Action on Immigration: Six Ways to Make the System Work Better," which outlines administrative actions that can be implemented to improve the immigration system.

Video, Audio
January 31, 2011

287(g) programs have surged into the public consciousness in recent years. Now operating in 72 jurisdictions, the 287(g) program authorizes state and local law enforcement officers to screen people for immigration status, issue detainers to hold unauthorized immigrants on immigration violations, and begin the process of their removal from the United States.

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Audio
August 26, 2011

With the ten year anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks approaching, the Migration Policy Institute held a conference call to discuss the most significant changes that have occurred in the immigration arena in the decade since the attacks.

Audio
July 14, 2011

This Migration Policy Institute webinar discusses labor enforcement laws during the Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations and chronicles gaps in labor protection.

Video, Audio
March 14, 2011

This discussion focuses on the MPI report, "Executive Action on Immigration: Six Ways to Make the System Work Better," which outlines administrative actions that can be implemented to improve the immigration system.

Video, Audio
January 31, 2011

287(g) programs have surged into the public consciousness in recent years. Now operating in 72 jurisdictions, the 287(g) program authorizes state and local law enforcement officers to screen people for immigration status, issue detainers to hold unauthorized immigrants on immigration violations, and begin the process of their removal from the United States.

Video, Audio
January 13, 2011

In a report by MPI's Labor Markets Initiative, noted economist and Georgetown University Public Policy Institute Professor Harry J. Holzer examines the economic reasoning and research on these questions and looks at the policy options that shape the impact of less-skilled immigration on the economy. The discussion is on what policy reform would best serve native-born American workers, consumers, and employers, as well as the overall U.S. economy.

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Recent Activity

Video, Audio
March 19, 2013

This discussion covers some of the most difficult issues that must be addressed if the United States is to reform its immigration system in ways that work not only for today’s reality but tomorrow’s future.

Video
March 14, 2013

Testimony of Demetrios G. Papademetriou, MPI President, before the Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security, Committee on the Judiciary, U.S. House of Representatives.

Fact Sheets
March 2013

A timeline of all major U.S. immigration laws from 1790 - 2013.

Fact Sheets
March 2013

A timeline of key immigration laws and policy developments between 1986 and 2013.

Books
March, 2013

This volume, which brings together research by leading economists and labor market specialists, examines the role immigrants play in the U.S. workforce, how they fare in good and bad economic times, and the effects they have on native-born workers and the labor sectors in which they are engaged. The book traces the powerful economic forces at play in today’s globalized world and includes policy prescriptions for making the American immigration system more responsive to labor market needs.

Policy Briefs
March 2013

This brief demystifies the technical meaning of going to the “back of the line”—a phrase adopted by lawmakers to convey the intent to grant legal status to unauthorized immigrants only after existing backlogs have been cleared—by explaining what “the line” refers to, who is in it, and what it means to be at the back of it.

Video, Audio
January 7, 2013

MPI has released a major study that describes and analyzes today’s immigration enforcement programs, as they have developed and grown in the 25 years since IRCA launched the current enforcement era.

Reports
January 2013

Over the past two decades, governing institutions in Mexico and parts of Central America have proven too primitive to cope with the volatility of democratic transitions. Organized crime has taken over key activities of various levels of government and corruption has become more entrenched. These regions must face the challenge of building democratic institutions capable of engaging in good governance.

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