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For more decades than imaginable, from every corner of the globe, generations after generation of migrant workers have come to the shores of the United States. Many have come to this ‘Golden Land of Opportunity’ in search of a better life. Some have stayed and created a homestead here. Some, on the other hand, have returned to their homeland and may or may not return periodically for more work opportunities. One fact cannot be disputed. Without immigrants and migrant workers, the success of the United States (as it exists today) would not have been possible.
Let’s take a look at a handful of ways that migrants literally add to the value of the United States economy. Some of the focus will be on the improvement of public finances, job creation, and boosting the growth of the economy itself.
US Innovation: Not All Has Been Initiated By US Citizens
Some of the most successful startups have had migrants behind them. Those fast-growing new companies have played an important role in the United States world of business. Independent research has discovered that many migrants are likely to have the spirit and work ethic that it takes to become an entrepreneur as do people born in the United States. When looking at startup activity throughout US history, a large percentage of businesses have been launched by migrants. Limiting the number of migrants allowed to work in the US would only serve to curb the economy and growth ambitions.
Flexibility Within the Labor Market
Immigrant/migrant workers meet any number of shortfalls which occur in a vast array of sectors. This applies to everything from filling in gaps in technology jobs and finance to professions such as skilled workmen and nursing. To fill seemingly unfillable vacancies, it is not uncommon for companies to seek overseas talent. Nursing is a particularly attractive job sector for skilled migrants. According to experts on immigration, nursing will be one of the hardest and first hit if migration to the United States is effectively restricted.
Collecting a Paycheck Means Paying Taxes
Unless the migrant worker in question is promoting himself as a contractor, he will be receiving a paycheck subject to tax withdrawals from his United States employer. Even if he claims dependents, he is paying (at least some) income tax out of that paycheck. Legally, it is unavoidable (unless, as previously mentioned, he bills himself as a contractor). That person may or may not file taxes every year, but the fact remains that part of his paycheck has gone to the United States government. So that worker and the money that he has been paid for working in the United States has been a contributing factor to the economy.
Immigrant Workers and America’s Key Sectors
In the United States, key sectors employing immigrant workers are utilities, transportation, trade, social assistance, and healthcare. Secondary to those are manufacturing, education services, and hospitality. As much as 17% of the workers employed in utilities, transportation, and trade are made up of migrant workers.
The United States is a multicultural society and is celebrated as such by many. Of all the people immigrating to the United States, the vast majority are seeking employment and of legal working age. Limiting migrant workers, or banning them entirely, will deal a serious blow to many of the key sectors now dependent, in large, upon the availability of those migrant workers.
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