New report shows exodus of Arizona immigrants since 2007
August 9th 2012 · 11 Comments
In the wake of economic recession, broad anti-immigrant legislation, and police crackdowns, Arizona may have lost up to one-quarter of its illegal immigrants. According to a new immigration report from the Center for Immigration Studies, the number of undocumented immigrants living in the state may have dropped by as many as 144,000 people since 2007. In contrast, the report shows that California’s illegal population remains unchanged, while those of Nevada, Texas, and Washington continue to rise.The report estimates that the number of undocumented immigrants in Arizona is between 435,000 and 479,000, down from the 2007 estimate of 579,000. The higher estimate accounts for the U.S. Census Bureau’s estimated 10 percent national undercount of illegal immigrants living in the U.S.
This 17 to 25 percent decrease may be attributed to the recession, which has taken a toll on Arizona’s hospitality, service, and construction jobs. Moreover, anti-immigration state laws and immigration raids led by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio have forced many undocumented immigrants to leave the state.
A version of this column originally appeared in 21border.com.
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