Thursday, March 26, 2009
The Recession and the Immigrant
Evidence has already accumulated that most undocumented immigrants intend to ride out the recession here. Some labor economists think they might do better than native workers. For the most part low-income workers, they are more mobile, skilled than the native low-income workers because of their backgrounds. So few economists anticipate -- at least in the short run -- competition for jobs among low income workers. But the Center for Immigration Studies, never friendly to any sort of immigrant, feels the continued presence of the undocumented in the workforce will depress wages. More friendly observers will put responsibility for the depression of wages, as well as neglect of wage,health and safety, and labor laws, on the employers taking advantage of workers in hard times. The New York Times published in its "Room for Debate" series a discussion on the issue of the recession's impact on low income workers.