The real value of immigrants

The real value of immigrants

Ending DACA could cost about 700,000 DACA recipients their jobs and employers 6.3 billions in employee turnover costs.

By Oso Oseguera, who is Editor in Chief at Chief Executive Officer North America and Latin America. He firmly believe life is better aboard a bicycle.

In Los Angeles, California protests shouted: “Today is the day we get up.” In Washington, DC, posters stated “Nazis outside the White House”, “This president lied to us.” On 5th Avenue, in New York, slogans such as “education, not deportation” were shouted. In front of the Freedom Tower in Miami, Florida was a sign that said: “Respect my existence or expect resistance”… and so on.

Ending the DACA Program would represent a 460.3 billion dollars deficit in economic output over the next decade in the United States.
Photo credit: Abogado San Miguel

“Dreamers” and immigrant advocacy groups showed their indignation after the suspension of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which benefits 780,000 young immigrants. The faces of sadness, despair and anguish populated the photos. Rage populated the protests.

On Tuesday morning, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who advised Donald Trump to cancel DACA, announced that within six months, the current administration will end the program that allowed thousands of young immigrants to be educated and productive. Sessions did not hide his feelings and slandered the DACA beneficiaries in a language with barely concealed racist nuances.

A study published by International Migration, an academic journal, found that the increase in unaccompanied minors began in 2008. (DACA was announced in 2012.) The authors noted a number of contributing factors to this phenomenon, violence in Central America, as well as the drug cartels’ will target and recruit children in Mexico.

However, the study found that DACA was not one of these factors.

Their authors concluded that “the claim that DACA is responsible for the increase in the flow of unaccompanied foreign children is not supported by the data.”

There is no real evidence that DACA recipients have taken jobs from Americans, much less than “hundreds of thousands.” However, there is strong evidence that canceling DACA will significantly damage the economy, a fact that Sessions conveniently omitted in his speech.

What is next for immigrants?

Once DACA is fully rescinded, its former beneficiaries will lose their work permits (and therefore their jobs) and face possible deportation. According to Center for American Progress, a left-wing think tank, about 30,000 people will lose their jobs every month because their DACA status expires. The report estimates the loss of their labor could cost the country $460.3 billion in economic output over the next decade.

Meanwhile, according to estimates by the Cato Institute, the death of the DACA will cost employers $2 billion and the federal government $60 billion. Trump’s decision to end DACA is not a saving measure; is a work killer.

Several CEOs of technology companies expressed their displeasure and sadness about the decision taken by the federal government and several of them will legally defend their “neighbors, our friends and co-workers,” as said in a tweet Sundar Pichai, executive director of Google.

Imagine that there is no AT&T in the United States, no Procter & Gamble, no Bank of America, no Apple, no Google, no eBay, no stellar growth companies like Tesla, SpaceX or Uber. All these companies share a feature beyond generating thousands of jobs, all were co-founded by immigrants or their children.

Read more on the upcoming risks of ending the DACA Program.