Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The high cost of immigration enforcement

According to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, taxpayers paid $5.2 million through Aug. 21 for the May 12 raid of the Agriprocessors Inc. meatpacking plant in Postville, Iowa, reports William Patroski of The Des Moines Register.

The cost of the raid, $13,396 for each of the 389 illegal immigrants taken into custody, has sparked fresh debate about immigration reform. Scott Frotman, a spokesman for the United Food and Commercial Workers union, told Patroski, "It raised serious due process issues, and it may have compromised federal investigations into labor abuses by the company's management."

On the other side of the debate some feel that failure to enforce immigration laws will simply be an impetus for more illegal immigration. U.S. Rep. Steve King, a very conservative Iowa Republican, told Patroski, "If we start saying, 'Well, it costs too much money to enforce the law,' then we will see more and more of these radical, pro-illegal immigration activists drive more wedges between us and make it harder to enforce the law." (Read more) For earlier posts on aid on The Rural Blog about the raid, click here, here and here.

No comments: