Introduction On June 24, — during the waning days of President Barack Obama's administration — Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson sent a three-page memorandum to 10 top law enforcement chiefs responsible for border security. So far, it also has evaded much mention in national debate over Trump administration immigration policy.
A major focus of his campaign was on removing immigrants who, he said, were increasing crime in American communities.
We turned to our experts for answers. Across metropolitan areas Robert Adelman, University at Buffalo, and Lesley Reid, University of Alabama Research has shown virtually no support for the enduring assumption that increases in immigration are associated with increases in crime.
We analyzed census data spanning four decades from to for randomly selected metropolitan areas, which include center cities and surrounding suburbs. Examining data over time allowed us to assess whether the relationship between immigration and crime changed with the broader U.
The most striking finding from our research is that for murder, robbery, burglary and larceny, as immigration increased, crime decreased, on average, in American metropolitan areas.
The only crime that immigration had no impact on was aggravated assault. These associations are strong and stable evidence that immigration does not cause crime to increase in U.
There are a number of ideas among scholars that explain why more immigration leads to less crime. Across 20 years of data Charis E. Kubrin, University of California, Irvine, and Graham Ousey, College of William and Mary For the last decade, we have been studying how immigration to an area impacts crime.
Cities and neighborhoods with greater concentrations of immigrants have lower rates of crime and violence, all else being equal. Our research also points to the importance of city context for understanding the immigration-crime relationship. Findings from our most recent study, forthcoming in the inaugural issue of The Annual Review of Criminology, only strengthen these conclusions.
We conducted a meta-analysis, meaning we systematically evaluated available research on the immigration-crime relationship in neighborhoods, cities and metropolitan areas across the U.
We examined findings from more than 50 studies published between andincluding studies conducted by our copanelists, Adelman and Reid. Our analysis of the literature reveals that immigration has a weak crime-suppressing effect.
In other words, more immigration equals less crime. There were some individual studies that found that with an increase in immigration, there was an increase in crime.
However, there were 2. And, the most common finding was that immigration had no impact on crime. We find no evidence to indicate that immigration leads to more crime and it may, in fact, suppress it.
Read the original article. Lesley Reid Lesley Reid is a professor and department chair of criminology and criminal justice at the University of Alabama.It is the nation's only think tank devoted exclusively to research and policy analysis of the economic, social, demographic, fiscal, and other impacts of immigration on the United States.
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