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The foreign-born share fell to a low of 5 percent 9. About 20 percent of all international migrants reside in the United States, which, as a country, accounts for less than 5 percent of the world's population. The foreign-born population is comprised of approximately 42 percent naturalized citizens, 31 percent permanent residents green card holders , and 27 percent unauthorized immigrants.
Roughly Chinese and Indian immigrants make up the second and third largest immigrant groups, with 1. In , India replaced the Philippines as the third largest source country see Table 1. The top three regions of origin of the foreign-born population are Latin America, Asia, and Europe see Figure 1.
The foreign-born population is geographically concentrated, with 65 percent residing in the six states that have long been the country's main immigrant destinations—about 25 percent in California alone in The other immigrant-heavy states are New York 11 percent of all foreign born , Texas 10 percent , Florida 9 percent , Illinois 4 percent , and New Jersey 5 percent. The proximity of several of these states to Mexico and longstanding, continuous immigration to traditional metropolitan destinations in New York, New Jersey, and Illinois created strong networks that have grown over time.
While these states continue to draw and represent the bulk of the foreign-born population, newcomers—particularly unauthorized immigrants from Mexico—began to settle in many additional destinations during the s. Employment opportunities—particularly in agriculture, food manufacturing and construction—mainly fueled the new settlement patterns.
They combined with lower costs of living and "hollowing out", i. As a result, states like Georgia, Nevada, and many others have become known as the "new growth" or "new destination" immigration states.
Ten states, mostly in the south and west, have experienced over percent immigrant population growth since These changes and patterns help to explain why immigration has become an issue of national political concern and debate. The guiding principles, and different ways to immigrate to the United States were largely established by the Immigration and Nationality Act and take place through three primary immigration streams.
They are family re unification for U. The most common ways to immigrate are through the family-based or employment-based channels. Family-based immigration rests on the principle of family unity. Immediate family members of U. Family-based immigrants must be sponsored by a qualifying relative under any of six categories of relatives. Family-sponsored immigration has accounted for about two-thirds of all permanent immigration to the United States over the last decade.
Employment-based visas for permanent immigration are dedicated to the nation's economic and labor market needs. Employment-based immigration is limited to , visas per year, and has accounted for between 12 percent in and 22 percent in of legal immigration in the last decade. In FY, it was 13 percent. Employment-based green cards are available for five categories of workers, the majority of whom must be sponsored by their employer.
Additionally, each year, approximately 50, individuals are granted permanent residency through the diversity visa lottery. Under the Immigration Act of , 55, applicants from countries that are underrepresented in U. Noncitizens must qualify for a family-based or employment-based visa, be a refugee or asylee, or be selected in the diversity visa lottery in order to become LPRs, i.
LPRs can permanently live and work in the United States, are eligible to naturalize after a certain number of years, and are subject to removal if they commit a serious crime. With the exception of spouses, minor children, and parents of U. However, the demand to immigrate greatly exceeds the number of visas Congress authorizes the government to grant. Additionally, no more than 7 percent of immigrant visas can be issued to nationals of a single country. The result has been delays in granting applications for eligible green card petitioners that frequently span many years, especially for immediate family members from Mexico or the Philippines, for example, which are among the top five source countries for legal immigration but face severe delays in getting a green card.
Over the past years, the levels of legal immigration have varied, from over 1 million people per year during the early 20th century to a trickle during the Great Depression and World War II see Figure 2. Immigrants legalized under IRCA caused the number of authorized immigrants to peak in the late s. The s and s, until the recession, have registered historic highs in overall immigration levels. The United States has long been the world's leading country of refuge, providing protection to victims of political, ethnic, religious and other forms of persecution through asylum and refugee resettlement.
Humanitarian protection has been an abiding, albeit sometimes controversial, tenet of U. The statutory determination to qualify as a refugee or asylee is the same. However, the terminology differs: refugees are granted humanitarian relief in a foreign country and travel to the United States for resettlement, while asylees apply for humanitarian status having already reached or are living in the country.
Refugee policy includes a flexible ceiling on admissions that the president and Congress set each year. Admissions may also be made from an "unallocated reserve. The United States admitted large numbers of refugees after World War II, in response to migration waves that occurred in the war's aftermath and in accord with international refugee protocols adopted by the United Nations. In , Congress passed the Refugee Act, a measure that adopted the definition of a refugee in U. It established, for the first time, a permanent and systematic procedure for admitting refugees, created a formal refugee resettlement process, and provided a statutory base for asylum for the first time.
European Political Facts of the Twentieth Century
Beginning that same year and throughout the s, U. Offering protection to these refugees, however, was at odds with the Reagan administration's cold war strategy of providing support to Central American governments being challenged by left-wing rebels. As a result, Salvadoran and Guatemalan asylum claims were approved at extremely low rates, while between and , almost one million Salvadorans and Guatemalans are estimated to have entered the United States unlawfully.
During the same period as the Cold War ended, large resettlement programs for refugees from Southeast Asia and the former Soviet Union have been replaced with admissions from a more diverse set of countries. One exception is Cuba, a communist country from which hundreds of thousands have fled since its revolution.
This massive emigration led to a agreement intended to prevent Cubans from trying to reach the United States by boat under life-threatening conditions. In FY , there were 36, new immigrants from Cuba, the vast majority entering as refugees. In the s and s, refugee and humanitarian emergencies led to annual admissions of more than , during some years.
FY saw 56, refugee arrivals, down from 73, in FY Burma 16, Iraq 9, Bhutan 14, , Somalia 3, , and Cuba 2, were the top five refugee-sending countries of FY That year, 24, individuals were granted asylum defensive and affirmative , a slight uptick from FY after about ten years of steady decline. There is no cap on asylum approvals. Noncitizens who enter the United States for tourism, work, or study reasons are admitted with a temporary nonimmigrant status. There are over 70 categories of visas for nonimmigrants, including tourists, business visitors, foreign students, H-1B workers, religious workers, intracompany transferees, diplomats, and representatives of international organizations.
Nonimmigrant visas typically have strict terms and conditions, and allow for periods of stay ranging from a few weeks or months to six or more years. A small number of nonimmigrant visas allow for eventual permanent residency. In , 7. Temporary tourism and business visitors represent the vast majority of nonimmigrant visa holders. Nonimmigrant visas issued to foreign students have increased significantly during the last decade. The , student visas issued in is more than 50 percent greater than the number issued in Much of this growth has been driven by the exponential rise in students from China, who now represent 35 percent of all foreign students.
Under the 14th amendment of the U. Citizenship can also be acquired through naturalization. Permanent residents are eligible for U. The current exam emphasizes U. The average annual number of naturalizations increased from less than , during the s and s to , during the s, up to , during the s, and again to , between and In , there were , naturalizations, up from , in and , in As of FY , 8. Since the s, a series of new laws and policies have affected naturalization trends. IRCA brought about historically high naturalizations in the mids as the 2. The growing eligibility pool further grew with passage of the laws described above.
They reduced noncitizens' access to federal benefits and legal protections, thus incentivizing naturalization. Between and , the number of naturalization petitions filed nearly tripled, from , to 1,, Naturalization spiked again in as a result of citizenship outreach campaigns ahead of the presidential election, coupled with a scheduled increase in the naturalization application fee that many eligible applicants attempted to beat.
In , Mexico accounted for the highest share of naturalizations The largest number of new citizens lived in California 21 percent , Florida Unauthorized immigrants enter the United States by crossing the land border clandestinely between formal ports of entry, using documents fraudulently for admission at a port of entry, or overstaying a valid temporary visa.
Illegal immigration began to build and reach relatively high levels in the early s. Immigration policymaking in the United States has been preoccupied with the issues it represents for much of the four decades since. The numbers of unauthorized immigrants who were not eligible for IRCA's legalization but remained in the United States, in addition to immigration spurred by rapid job creation in the s and early s, combined with powerful push factors in Mexico, have caused the unauthorized population to grow by , to , per year between and After reaching an estimated peak of 12 million in , the unauthorized population has declined in recent years, to Illegal immigration is a bellwether of economic conditions, growing substantially in a strong economy with high demand for low-skilled labor the s and early s , and tapering off with economic contraction since see Figure 4.
The arrival of unauthorized immigrants in large numbers has revitalized certain communities and contributes to local economic growth. At the same time, rapid and unchecked social change and pressure on public services brought about by individuals here illegally has sparked anger and resentment, making immigration a hotly contested issue of national concern.
DHS estimates that 59 percent of unauthorized residents are Mexican born; with El Salvador accounting for 6 percent, Guatemala 5 percent, Honduras 3 percent, and China 2 percent. The ten leading countries of origin also include the Philippines, India, Korea, Ecuador, and Vietnam, which represented 85 percent of the unauthorized immigrant population in Roughly 46 percent of unauthorized adult immigrants are parents of young children.
As of , there were 5. While 1 million of these minors are also unauthorized, the vast majority—4. While the public debate tends to focus disproportionately on questions of who, how many, and what kind of noncitizens should be admitted to the United States, many see immigrant integration as the true test of a successful immigration system. Unlike other traditional immigration countries, such as Canada and Australia, for example, the United States does not have a federally-driven immigrant integration policies or an agency responsible for making sure immigrants effectively become part of U.
Instead, integration policies are limited, underfunded, largely ad hoc, and often target narrow immigrant groups, such as refugees or migrant workers.
Historically, schools, churches, employers, and community-based groups have taken the lead at the local level to spearhead immigrant integration efforts that include English classes, job training, and health care clinics. In recent years, several states and cities have launched integration initiatives aimed at improving opportunities and services available to immigrants. Federal policies that affect immigrant integration outcomes include the No Child Left Behind Act passed in that required schools and funding for states to ensure that limited English proficient LEP children become proficient in English.
Access to basic rights and mainstream institutions in American society like most jobs in the labor market, public education, community and emergency health care systems, and citizenship have been the pillars of successful integration, despite that fact that they do not represent explicit, formal policy efforts. Integration is commonly measured by comparing indicators such as income, education, health, and living standards for foreign and native-born populations.
Despite the absence of broad immigrant integration policies, the foreign born have historically become well integrated in the United States. At the same time, today's large numbers of foreign born, especially the sizable unauthorized population who may gain legal status if CIR is enacted, pose substantial immigrant integration challenges for all levels of government and society—as well as for the individuals themselves—in the years ahead. As illegal immigration intensified during recent decades, immigration enforcement has been the dominant focus of the federal government's response to immigration for at least 25 years.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. France, A. Overview In France, the first half of the twentieth century is dominated by the two world wars.
Primary Chronology France, A. Secondary Chronology France, A.