Enforcement

Enforcement

Creating Cohesive, Coherent Immigration Policy
US immigration policy has serious limitations, particularly when viewed from an economic perspective. Some shortcomings arise from faulty initial design, others from the inability of the system to adapt to changing circumstances. In either case, a reluctance to confront politically difficult decisions is often a contributing factor to the failure to craft laws that can stand the test of time. This paper argues that, as a result, some key aspects of US immigration policy are incoherent and mutually contradictory — new policies are often inconsistent with past policies and undermine their goals. Inconsistency makes policies less effective because participants in the immigration system realize that lawmakers face powerful incentives to revise policies at a later date. It specifically analyzes US policies regarding unauthorized immigration, temporary visas, and humanitarian migrants as examples of incoherence and inconsistency. Lastly, this paper explores key features of an integrated, coherent immigration policy from an economic perspective and how policymakers could better attempt to achieve policy consistency across laws and over time.

Read More

The 2,000 Mile Wall in Search of a Purpose: Since 2007 Visa Overstays have Outnumbered Undocumented Border Crossers by a Half Million
This paper speaks to another reason to question the necessity and value of a 2,000-mile wall along the US-Mexico border: It does not reflect the reality of how the large majority of persons now become undocumented. The paper presents information about the mode of arrival of the undocumented population that resided in the United States in 2014. To simplify the presentation, it divides the 2014 population into two groups: overstays and entries without inspection (EWIs). The estimates are based primarily on detailed estimates of the undocumented population in 2014 compiled by CMS and estimates of overstays for 2015 derived by the US Department of Homeland Security.

Read More

The CMS US Immigration Reform Project
The CMS US Immigration Reform Project seeks to look beyond current immigration debates to offer analysis, ideas and proposals that: Address the range of conditions driving and likely to drive international migration into the foreseeable future; Consider the impact of...

Read More

The End of the Deterrence Paradigm? Future Directions for Global Refugee Policy
Asylum lies at the heart of the international refugee protection regime. Yet, today, most states in the developed world implement a range of deterrence measures designed to prevent access to asylum on their territories. With particular attention to Europe’s response to the Syrian refugee crisis, this paper categorizes contemporary deterrence policies. It then questions the sustainability and effectiveness of such policies. A number of deterrence measures do not conform with refugee and human rights law, rendering the refugee protection regime vulnerable to collapse. Finally, this article suggests some ways forward to address these problems. It discusses the partial success of legal challenges to deterrence measures and opportunities for alternative avenues to access protection. Ultimately, however, it argues that the viability of the refugee protection regime requires collective action and international burden-sharing.

Read More

Migration Experts Series | Thomas Gammeltoft-Hansen
Thomas Gammeltoft-Hansen, Research Director at the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and adjunct Professor of Law at Aarhus University, discusses his paper, “The End of the Deterrence Paradigm? Future Directions for Global Refugee Policy.” The paper...

Read More

National Identity and 3 of the Most Damaging Directives in President Trump’s Executive Orders on Immigration and Refugees
President Trump’s “shock and awe” strategy in the form of multiple executive orders on immigration and refugees creates three major risks: first, that many of the most damaging provisions will evade scrutiny in the glare of more high profile issues like building an unnecessary and unsustainable 2,000 mile border wall; second, that the cynical rationale for the orders (security and safety) will actually stick, if repeated enough times, and; third, that some portion of this agenda may actually be implemented at permanent cost to our nation’s well-being, core values and identity.

Read More

Critical Perspectives on Clandestine Migration Facilitation: An Overview of Migrant Smuggling Research
This paper provides an overview of contemporary, empirical scholarship on clandestine migration facilitation. It argues clandestine migration is not merely the domain of criminal groups. Rather, it also involves protection mechanisms crafted within migrant and refugee communities. Yet amid concerns over national and border security, and the reemergence of nationalism, said strategies have become increasingly stigmatized and perceived as an inherently criminal activity. This paper constitutes an attempt to rethink the framework in everyday narratives of irregular migration facilitation.

Read More