sanctuary states

Sanctuary state is a term that takes on many different meanings in this politically charged atmosphere. However, the bottom line for both political sides is that these areas are places where illegal immigrants are protected. Nonetheless, the similarities end there and the confusion behind these immigration laws begins.

What Is A Sanctuary State?

A sanctuary state is defined as a municipal jurisdiction that limits its cooperation with the federal immigration enforcement agents, in order to protect illegal immigrants that have come to this country to start a new life and make a living. But, this safeguard does not apply to those immigrants that have committed severe crimes. Within most of these sanctuary states, the sanctuary policies try to limit the degree in which the local police cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) relative to immigration enforcement. This doesn’t mean that these states do not cooperate with ICE, rather allows them to have discretion to deny certain ICE requests. 

Why Are Sanctuary States Being Threatened?

In this current political environment, there have been many threats against sanctuary states, including from President Trump. He tried to issue an executive order which would strip municipalities of federal dollars if they shielded illegal immigrants. Even though his actions were unsuccessful, the fight against these states carries on. Recently, the President made threats to transport illegal immigrants detained at the border to sanctuary areas to carry out his immigration crackdown. He was hoping it would cause chaos which would further his political stance.

In addition, to these Presidential push-backs, certain states have begun taking measures into their own hands against sanctuary policies. These states have begun adopting their own “anti-sanctuary state” laws. These laws make it illegal for local law enforcement agencies and local governments to uphold policies that limit cooperation with federal immigration authorities. This makes it harder to protect these illegal immigrants. As the pushback and threats against sanctuary states continues to grow, confusion and the effects of these policies are felt by all. 

How Will This Affect Immigrants/People/Country?

Worry of job displacement, economic decline, and violence increase is constantly on the forefront behind the “anti-sanctuary” policies. However, as more data is released, studies continue to show the positive effect that immigrants have on our country. Implementing these “anti-sanctuary” policies can have detrimental effects on not only the illegal immigrants, who will be forced to return to their dangerous countries, but to the United States who will miss out on all the benefits that these immigrants can bring to the country.

Boost Local Economy:

As more people arrive, their demand for goods, housing, and other services increase. Therefore, an increase in demand results in an increase in supply and an increase in the local economy.

Creating Opportunities:

As Nobel laureates in economics have stated to President Trump, “immigrants are far more likely to work in innovative, job-creating fields such as science, technology, engineering, and math that create life-improving products.” These immigrants, not only create opportunities for our country and the people that live in it, but boost the overall economy.

ICE Statistics:

The path for these illegal immigrants remains unclear, but the fact is, their effect on this country is profound. Data collected by ICE shows these stats in regards to the country’s economy, crime, and labor when illegal immigration is taken into account:

  • Crime is statistically significantly lower in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties.
  • Median household income is higher in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties.
  • Consistent with higher median household income, poverty is lower in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties.
  • The labor force participation rate is higher in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties. 
  • Unemployment whether measured by total unemployment or white unemployment—is lower in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties.

Let Us Help!

With all the confusion and divisiveness today in immigration law, it is imperative that when dealing with an immigration issue, you call the experts. With Immigration Law Group, you know you’ll get professionals that understand today’s immigration culture and can handle any immigration challenges. If you have any immigration questions or concerns, contact us today!