Why You Should Care


Undocumented immigrants that held detained often come to the U.S. for various reasons. Some to seek refuge because of natural disasters or violence. While some come to see a better economic future for them and their families, others are seeking refuge because of violence against their sexual orientation or gangs.

The buildings of immigration detention centers are bought by private companies, and the federal government pays for the rooms which the detainees live in. In order for the centers to function properly, they must meet a certain quota that varies by year. Each detainee costs $165 per day, which accumulates to $60,225 per year, said Sally Pillay from First Friends of NY & NJ.

Undocumented immigrants are just like any other American citizen. They pay taxes, go to school, work, and need health care. “Immigrants pay taxes, in the form of income, property, sales, and taxes at the federal and state level,” said First Friends.

According to the Cato Institute, immigrants contribute $162 million in business to all levels of government in the U.S.  Also, waves of immigration to the U.S. have greatly contributed to the growth of the national economic. Three-quarters of immigrants already know English, and English classes are available for those who need to learn the language.

Despite the stereotypes, three-quarters of immigrants of have permanent residency, leaving a quarter of them undocumented, and 40% overstayed their visas. 

For more information about advocacy for undocumented immigrants and facts about immigration visit First Friends of NY & NJ


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