Immigration 101

The U.S. immigration system is complex and can be difficult to understand. These resources provide key data points, historical information, and background on hot topics in immigration. Learn the basics about immigration.

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All Immigration 101 Content

Publication Date: 
January 31, 2013
While there are many facets to an intelligent immigration reform package, one thing is clear: legalization for undocumented immigrants helps all of us. Most economists recognize that legalization...
Publication Date: 
January 31, 2013
As the immigration debate heats up in Congress, the central question will be what to do about the 11 million...
Publication Date: 
August 2, 2012
The evidence of non-citizens voting is sparse and...
Publication Date: 
July 13, 2012
A wave of restrictive voting laws is sweeping the nation. The Brennan Center for Justice at New York...
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June 28, 2012
Immigrants from Africa constitute a highly diverse and rapidly growing group in the United States. As Census data demonstrate, the African foreign-born population doubled in size between 2000 and...
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April 26, 2012
Latinos in the United States are a diverse and fast-growing group that is amassing considerable economic and political power. As data from the 2010 Census and other sources demonstrate, Latinos now...
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April 26, 2012
Asians in the United States are a highly diverse group that is growing fast not only in size, but in political and economic power as well.
Publication Date: 
February 14, 2012
The United States is in the midst of a profound demographic transformation that will long outlast the current economic downturn. In 2011, the first of the baby boomers—Americans born between 1946 and...
Publication Date: 
January 13, 2012
The United States and the colonial society that preceded it were created by successive waves of immigration from all corners of the globe. But public and political attitudes towards immigrants have...
Publication Date: 
November 4, 2011
There is no evidence that undocumented immigrants come to the U.S. just to give birth.
September 13, 2022

The Biden administration is close to using all of the employment-based immigrant visas (green cards) allotted for Fiscal Year (FY) 2022. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced...

September 9, 2022

Written by American Immigration Council staff Leani García Torres and Raul Pinto The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative provides certain young, undocumented immigrants with a...

September 7, 2022

There is no doubt that fentanyl is a major problem inside the United States. Over the last decade, rising availability of fentanyl has caused a spike in overdose deaths across the nation. In 2021...

August 31, 2022

As hundreds of thousands of students prepare to go back to school this fall, it’s important to consider the outsized role international students play in both campus life and the United States...

August 25, 2022

School is back in session. For many states and localities across the country, that means welcoming newly arrived immigrant and refugee youth into the classroom. There will be increased need for...

August 10, 2022

The lack of a major overhaul in the United States’ immigration system for roughly thirty years has created an ecosystem where states have attempted to insert their authority over immigration,...

August 4, 2022

Opponents of immigration often claim that European immigrants who came to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries are radically different than the Latin Americans and Asians...

July 20, 2022

Lawsuits asking courts to order government employees to decide long-pending immigration filings have increased sharply in the past year. According to a recent report by the Transactional Records...

July 5, 2022

As communities across the United States came together this past weekend to commemorate and reflect upon our country’s independence, the holiday holds special significance for one group in...

June 29, 2022

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) operates under a flawed funding model. This virtually guarantees that the agency will always be under-funded and under-staffed. As a result, USCIS...

November 2, 2023

The Department of Labor (DOL) recently issued its yearly Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor report, examining 131 countries’ efforts to abolish child labor in 2022 and the obstacles those...

September 28, 2023

By Karen Aho and Robin Lundh of the American Immigration Council Today, Hispanic Americans form the largest ethnic group in the United States. The value of Hispanic Americans to the makeup of the...

September 28, 2023

A recent Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) decision bars certain recently arrived noncitizens from becoming lawful permanent residents. In Matter of Cabrera-Fernandez, the BIA held that the...

September 28, 2023

After weeks of failed negotiations on spending, Congress has less than a week left to avert a potential government shutdown. Members of the House Republicans’ Freedom Caucus have refused to pass...

September 8, 2023

The school year has started, and many college students are returning to campuses nationwide, including undocumented and DACA-eligible students. Data from the 2021 American Community Survey (ACS)...

September 5, 2023

On August 24, 2023, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a new update to its policy manual clarifying a previous policy change aimed at expanding green card eligibility...

August 25, 2023

When the Trump administration proposed an overhaul of federal policy regarding when immigrants could be denied green cards or visas based on use of public benefits – the public charge rule – it...

July 31, 2023

With most state legislatures having adjourned for the year, states—once again—continue to lead the way for welcoming immigrants and refugees. The American Immigration Council tracked over 1,000...

July 26, 2023

In June, the Canadian immigration minister announced a new initiative to attract high-tech talent to Canada — from the United States. The Tech Talent Strategy targets foreign-born workers who have...

July 18, 2023

Written by 5th grade student Lillie Villezcas of Nevada  3 I am number 3, but how does number 3 apply to me? I am third generation of an immigrant family, third generation of fading traditions and...

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