Public Policy Brief No. 7 | June 1993

Immigration Policy: A Tool of Labor Economics?

Immigration and the U.S. Labor Market: Public Policy Gone Awry

Vernon M. Briggs argues that, while mass immigration in the past was consistent with then-existing labor market needs, today it is incompatible with the nation's economic development trends and labor force requirements. He concludes that it is important to shift the emphasis of the legal immigration admission system away from the politically popular family reunification program to one that is designed primarily to serve economic purposes. With an abundant domestic stock of unskilled and undereducated workers, the nation must recognize the long-term economic consequences of unmitigated entry of individuals lacking the human capital attributes that are needed in the domestic labor market.

Associated Program:
Vernon M. Briggs Jr.

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