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The Only 7 States Where the Illegal Immigrant Workforce Is Growing

Immigrants become American citizens during a naturalization ceremony at Liberty State Park

Immigrants become American citizens during a naturalization ceremony at Liberty State Park Immigrants become American citizens during a naturalization ceremony at Liberty State Park. | John Moore/Getty Images

With the election of Donald Trump, the discussion about illegal immigration has become more contentious. And it was already pretty contentious. Though immigration is largely beneficial, there are plenty of concerns that simply haven’t been addressed. People are scared of losing their jobs, terrorist attacks, and seeing their tax dollars spent on people who, they believe, shouldn’t be in the country in the first place.

The truth is, very few (if any) Americans are going to lose their jobs to undocumented workers. It’s much more likely that big businesses will use legal loopholes to import cheaper labor — something that is widely unknown or ignored by many Americans. Illegal immigration has also largely reversed over the past eight years. Pew Research Center recently released a report detailing the declines and increases in the undocumented population, and as this chart shows, overall growth has stalled and reversed.

The stabilization of illegal immigration over the past several years

The stabilization of illegal immigration over the past several years The stabilization of illegal immigration over the past several years | Pew Research Center

Using data between 2009 and 2014, Pew was able to look for trends in the immigrant population. According to the report, “there were 8 million unauthorized immigrants in the U.S. working or looking for work in 2014, making up 5% of the civilian labor force.” But when you look beyond national trends and to the state level, there are some clear differences:

“From 2009 to 2014, when the number of unauthorized immigrant workers was stable, eight U.S. states – Alabama, California, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Nevada, South Carolina and Rhode Island – had statistically significant declines in the number of unauthorized immigrants in their workforces,” the report said.

Conversely, seven states had increases in their undocumented populations. From Pew’s report, here are those seven states.

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