The Pew Research Center released a report which has found, for the first time in over 60 years, the Border Patrol has captured more non-Mexican immigrants crossing the Mexican-American border than Mexican immigrants.
The number of non-Mexican immigrants who were captured totaled 257,000 while the number of Mexican immigrants captured was slightly less, at 229,000.
This is a huge shift in numbers compared to the year 2007 when close to 809,000 Mexican immigrants were captured while attempting to cross the border, as compared to the 68,000 non-Mexican immigrants who were captured.
Jens Manuel Krogstad, co-author of the Pew report, told VICE News, “It is a pretty striking milestone… It’s the first time on record this has happened.”
What the research also found was the number of Mexican immigrants coming to America illegally seemed to drop drastically around the 2008 recession.
“That’s been for a variety of reasons,” said Krogstad. “Some of them are economic, there are fewer jobs in the US, and economic conditions in Mexico also contributed. Also, there’s increased border enforcement.”
Another reason for the increase in non-Mexican immigrants is attributed to the number of children from other Central and South American countries who have made the trek to America. Some experts are claiming the violence in these countries is driving some immigrants out of their homelands.
Wendy Feliz, a spokeswoman for the American Immigration Council, said, “It’s no surprise given how violent it’s gotten in Central America that those numbers are up… It used to be all economic reasons, now it’s gotten to the point where people are actually seeking safety.”
The number of child immigrants coming to America has sparked a lot of debate in DC and across the country about what to do with the children.
In November, President Obama passed an executive action which relieves about 4 million of the 11 million immigrants in America from the threat of deportation.