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The biggest immigration debate of this year in the US has been what to do about the rise in migration pressure at the Southwest border. That pressure comes mostly from the “Northern Triangle” of Central America: Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.
European policymakers are currently meeting in Brussels. Top of the agenda: controlling irregular migration from Africa. To make this work, here’s what they need to understand about the relationship between migration and development.
If you’ve followed the news the last few days, you know that there is a migrant caravan approaching the US border, 7000-people strong. But who are these people, why have they left Central America, and what do they want once they cross the border?
Migration and displacement are among the greatest policy challenges of this century. Governance of the humanitarian system is at a crossroads, and key innovations shaking up traditional ways of working provide a window of opportunity for a broader, pragmatic reform effort. CGD has launched a new program built on these three pillars to propose evidence-based ways forward for policymakers and practitioners.
Too often, migration debates focus on what the effects of immigration are: Do migrants take jobs and drive down wages of native workers? Are refugees a drain on public services, taking advantage of social welfare? Facing this challenge means asking a different and more fruitful question: how different policy choices can produce positive outcomes and avoid negative ones.
The US is going to use aid to shape migration. That’s at least how the president’s remarks seem to have laid it out at an immigration roundtable last month, when he announced his White House is “working on a plan to deduct a lot of aid” from countries whose nationals arrive at the US border. “[W]e may not just give them aid at all.”
The United States will be changing how it admits foreign farm workers. Done right, this presents a big opportunity to meet clear goals of the current administration: to reduce unauthorized migration and create US jobs. Three core tenets to keep in mind: non-seasonal work, visa portability, and bilateral cooperation.