Migration 101 Episode 9
Episode 9: Want More or Less Migration? Here's What to Think About
- Look not only at migration policy; look at your entire economic and labor market policy.
- Economic liberalization and more restricted immigration are opposites. You cannot have both.
- Unskilled migrant workers fill a real demand for unskilled labor in many countries.
- Childcare workers and domestic workers form a large proportion of unskilled labor. A country that does not provide good childcare and eldercare to its citizens cannot stop immigration of foreign workers willing to take those jobs that citizens do not want. If a society wants less immigration, it needs to rethink its childcare and eldercare policies.
- It's difficult to force people to do work they don't want to do. Certain jobs are seen as degrading, and citizens do not want to do them, but migrants will. Again, you need to look at the entire economic and labor market, not just the migration policy.
- Morocco: Moroccan graduates no longer want agricultural jobs. Sub-Saharan migrants are beginning to take over those jobs. Employers find them more motivated and more willing to work hard.
- An open, liberal society creates a destination for migrants, both "desirable" (skilled, educated) and "undesirable" (unskilled, uneducated); and there will always be jobs for unskilled workers.