US deportation ranking up as Irish deportees increase
By Noel Baker - Tuesday, October 27, 2009
MORE Irish people have been deported from the United States in the past year, with the increase in numbers leading to a jump in our deportation ranking.
New figures provided by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office show that, in the year to the end of September 2009, a total of 117 Irish people were deported from America, an increase of 23 people compared with the previous 12 month period.
The rise in deportations has led to Ireland’s deportation ranking, based on the number of citizens expelled from the US, jumping from 65 out of 220 countries in 2008 to 53rd this year.
The figures show that 21 Irish people were removed from the US this June, the highest monthly figure in the past two years. Fourteen people were removed in April 2009, and 12 in July.
A spokesperson for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office said they did not know if the increase in deportations was attributable to more Irish people entering the US and working illegally.
The ICE’s fiscal year runs from September to September, and the number of deportations to Ireland last month fell to four.
Other figures, provided by the Department of Homeland Security in the US Customs and Border Protection Office shows the number of Irish people entering the US has dropped considerably. In the fiscal year to the end of September 2008 some 596,828 Irish citizens entered the US, with 538 deemed inadmissible and refused entry.
More recent figures for the year to the end of last month show that the number of Irish visitors dropped to 427,650, with 456 people denied entry.
This story appeared in the printed version of the Irish Examiner Tuesday, October 27, 2009
This article clearly underscores the need for long overdue changes in our U.S. immigration policies as they apply to the undocumented Irish community here. As stated in another recent submission, Irish Americans in general and members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in particular, have a moral obligation to support immigration reform legislation. Undocumented Irish immigrants living in the U.S. must have an opportunity to resolve their unfortunate immigration status. Also, in order for Irish America, as we know it, to grow and flourish we need to amend the law to provide for legal immigration from Ireland as a permanent addition to U.S. immigration policy.