Attrition Through Enforcement - a doubtful belief

As the number of unauthorized immigrants flowing into the country grew rapidly, only two options were left to control the situation, either establish means to integrate the unauthorized immigrants by providing them with legal status or deport all of them in one go. The idea behind Attrition Through Enforcement was seeded as it became difficult to control the open borders and keep a check on unauthorized immigrants stepping into the country.
The estimates say that there are as many as 12 million illegal immigrants in the country, so it is not possible deport them all at once.
Attrition Through Enforcement follows the principle that by making it difficult for an illegal immigrant to stay in the country without abiding the stringent laws imposed upon them, eventually making it close to impossible for such an immigrant to earn his living in the country, it will be necessary for him to leave the country on his own accord i.e. self-deportation.
However, recent upsurge in unauthorized immigration of Mexicans into the United States despite all the effort put up by the federal agents and local agents alike has raised a doubtful eye upon the whole idea behind Attrition Through Enforcement.
Recent studies have put light upon the fact that the key factor that drives the migration pattern of Mexicans is the U. S. economy and not actually the enforcement.
This was further strengthened with the fact that there had been a great decline in the flow of unauthorized immigrants during the recession period in 2007-2008.
Many of the illegal immigrants who lived in the United States even chose to return to their own country during the Great Recession.
It could have implied that the decline in the illegal immigration was due to the Attrition Through Enforcement, but it was found that there was a steady increase in the flow of illegal immigrants since late 2010 despite ‘attrition’ in force.
The much demand for Mexican labours in U. S. economy further boosted the flow of such illegal immigrants.
As of now, it is still to be seen whether the principles of Attrition Through Enforcement really works in the favour of anti-immigrant activists and nativists or it is just a doubtful belief.
Nonetheless, these unauthorized immigrants have a heart to keep themselves going on, for better ways of earning their living.


Reddy & Neumann, P.C. is an immigration law firm in Houston, Texas. For over 15 years, our firm has successfully represented corporate clients across the United States in their efforts to bring foreign workers and business professionals to the United States. Reddy & Neumann, P.C. is dedicated in its advocacy and community involvement efforts towards achieving effective comprehensive immigration policy reform. From filing, through approval, and on to appeal, we do everything possible to ensure that your company can bring the best and brightest in the world to the United States.