The number of illegal immigrants in New Jersey changed little betweens 2007 and 2010, a new study by the Pew Hispanic Center shows. Given the distance between New Jersey and the Mexican border, it is surprising that New Jersey is one of the states with the highest percentages of undocumented aliens and illegal immigrations in the country.
A stunning 6% of New Jersey’s residents, or 550,000 illegal immigrants, are in the country out-of-status. This places New Jersey fifth among the states with the largest amount of illegals. California, New York, Texas and Florida are only reported to have more.
Since 2007, the amount of illegal immigrants in New Jersey dropped only marginally. This is surprisingly small given the drastic decline in economic opportunity in the State.
8.6 percent of New Jersey’s workers are undocumented, the third highest level in the Country. Immigrants actually constitute a higher percentage of working age people than the general population, the study said.
Levels of illegal immigration across the county have changed little in the past 3 years. Nationwide, about 11 million, residents are technically here illegally. However, more than 70 percent of foreign born residents living in the United States are here legally. Illegal immigrants constitute only 28 percent of the foreign born population as whole.
Both immigrant advocates and those who actively oppose illegal immigration stated that they were surprised by the study. President Obama remarked during his recent State of the Union address that he planned to soon tackle the issue of comprehensive immigration reform with the new congress. Time will tell.