The Future of Undocumented Immigrants

by Yuuka Kageyama

An undocumented immigrant is someone who resides in a country without proper documentation and the number of it is estimated over 10 million in the US. Sometimes the adjective “illegal” is used to describe certain immigrants in many places including public organization. However, some people have come to disagree to the use of the word by saying that it’s inaccurate and improper.  The problem over undocumented immigrants is dividing the recognition about them in the US.

It is true that they are not legitimate residents because they entered into the country and keep staying there without getting the permission from the government by using fake passport or overstaying their visas for instance. That’s why they are called as illegal immigrants and some people say it’s not unfair to deport them.

In spite of such viewpoints against undocumented immigrants, they are also regarded as important elements in part because they can contribute to the US economy by paying tax. Moreover, they can have jobs which Americans don’t want to have, and meet the demand in the low cost labor. Moreover, undocumented immigrants, facing to many difficulties such as discrimination and insufficient access to medical care, education and to court because of the fear to be arrested by the police, struggle to change the situation to get a legal status and citizenship.

As can be seen above, there are both opponents and proponents. What should government do about this problem? I think the Dream Act, which provides conditional permanent residency to the young, would be effective because it can protect the children who have no responsibility to their status. In my opinion, the situation of children and that of parents are different. Children have no choice but to be undocumented immigrants because of their parents. For them, new country is their only place to live in and feel attachment to. They should not be treated as illegal, much less deported. As the Convention on the Rights of the Children states, children need to be fully protected irrespective of their situation and the country they belong to. Although there are still problems, it would be easier to reach an agreement on the protection of the children. I don’t think it is better for government to accept more and more immigrants but undocumented immigrants, especially young people in the country should be given the right in some ways so that they can dream hopeful future, which can also contribute to the country.


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