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Why Do People Migrate?

Over the past decade, there’s been a substantial amount of news on immigration. There has been an ongoing debate since the Obama administration’s series of executive actions that granted millions of undocumented immigrants protection from deportation. Naturally, this bold proclamation created an uproar. Compared to the Trump administration who worked diligently to enforce orders that protect the American people while simultaneously cracking down on illegal entry into the country.

As you can imagine, this caused a great divide in the country concerning immigration and the best way to address it. If you’re an United States (U.S.) citizen, then you’ve probably realized the stark contrasts regarding immigration between the two administrations.

More than 1 million immigrants arrive in the U.S. each year. The U.S. foreign-born population reached a record 44.8 million. Immigrants today account for 13.7% of the U.S. population, nearly triple the share (4.8%) in 1970. It is well known that freedom of speech is one of the most vital aspects of the constitution, and dialogue is the only way to arrive at a thoughtful conclusion. For this reason, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why different groups of people choose to immigrate.

To escape past or future persecution based on race,religion, and/or nationality

In most countries, and in the U.S., families and individuals who meet this criteria may obtain refugee status or asylum. It is important to note that refugees must secure their status prior to entering the country of choice, whereas asylum seekers seek status upon arrival

To find refuge after being displaced due to environmental factors

Natural disasters, erosion, and other environmental factors are very real and serious threats to mankind. According to an article from The Guardian, 1 billion people – that is one in seven people on Earth today – could be forced to leave their homes over the next 50 years as the effects of climate change worsen, based on a new report from Christian Aid.

Since this is a newer phenomenon, many countries are still trying to determine how to respond to this growing issue.

For jobs and business opportunities

In some cases, people migrate with the knowledge or hope that more opportunities will be available to them in their particular field than at home. Others choose to migrate after employment has already been offered to them.

To escape conflict or violence

In many countries across the world, families and individuals migrate to escape major conflicts like war and violence. Those who leave their countries because of this reason can be considered for refugee status or asylum.

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